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Mineral Chemistry of Pyroxene Gneiss in Obudu, SE Nigeria, and Its Petrological Significance


The pyroxene gneiss which forms part of the basement cover in southeast Nigeria is a coarse-grained weakly foliated rock that has experienced high-grade metamorphism and anatexis. Electron microprobe data obtained from samples of this pyroxene-bearing gneiss confirm that the essential minerals are plagioclase (andesine, An30 – 37), orthopyroxene (hypersthene, En55.3 – 61.2, Wo1.0 – 2.6, Fs36.3 – 43.7), and clinopyroxene (augite, En39.7 –42.3, Wo42.0 – 45.1, Fs14.2 – 17.0). This assemblage is a typical granulite facies mineralogy produced by igneous rocks with intermediate to mafic composition that have been metamorphosed at medium pressure. Other minerals are calcic amphibole (XMg = 0.56–0.59), biotite (XMg = 0.58–0.69), orthoclase, and quartz. Orthoclase occurs mainly in leucocratic bands and clinopyroxene absent samples and may have resulted from dehydration reaction and thus dissolved in the melt phase. Fe-Ti oxides of ilmenite, hematite, and magnetite occur as accessory minerals, giving the imprint of metamorphism under oxidizing conditions. The presence of exsolved titanohematite in ilmenite indicates retrogressive metamorphism.