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Geology, Petrology and Geochemistry of Volcanic Rocks Around Arba Minch, Southern Ethiopia
Earth Sciences
Volume 8, Issue 3, June 2019, Pages: 160-168
Received: Apr. 24, 2019; Accepted: May 28, 2019; Published: Jun. 12, 2019
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Gosaye Berhanu, Department of Geology, Arba Minch University, Arba Minch, Ethiopia
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The study area is subpart of the southern main Ethiopian Rift and geographically bounded between UTM (Universal Transverse Mercator) coordinates of 662000m-669000m latitude and 336000m-341000m longitude. The main aim of this study is to investigate the geological, petrographic and geochemical properties of volcanic rocks around Arba Minch, southern Ethiopia. Both field and laboratory analytical techniques are employed to characterize minerals and the rock types. Eight thin section samples are prepared to study petrographic properties of minerals and five best representative samples are analyzed for whole rock chemistry using ICP-MS (Inductively Coupled Plasma-Mass Spectrometry). Petrographically, samples from the porphyritic basalt show phenocrysts of olivine and plagioclase within the fine-grained groundmass. There are rounded to subrounded holes or vesicles that appear white under plane polarized light observations and dark under cross polarized light observations which further confirms vesicular nature of the basalt. Thin section sample from rhyolite outcrop shows phenocrysts of K-feldspar and quartz within tiny fine-grained groundmass of feldspar minerals. Aphanitic basalt, Porphyritic basalt, vesicular basalt, rhyolite and dolerite are the rock units found in the study area. The geochemical results of the analyzed samples indicate silica ranges of (48.5-60.1)%. Based geochemical classifications made, rock units are classified into rhyolite, basalt, hawaiite and mugherite rock types. Trace element analytical results show all samples lie on the within plate tectonic setting. The rare earth and trace element ratios and spider diagrams confirmed that most samples are derived from magmas of asthenospheric source with little crustal contamination.
Rift, Rock, Mineral, Basalt, Element
To cite this article
Gosaye Berhanu, Geology, Petrology and Geochemistry of Volcanic Rocks Around Arba Minch, Southern Ethiopia, Earth Sciences. Vol. 8, No. 3, 2019, pp. 160-168. doi: 10.11648/
Copyright © 2019 Authors retain the copyright of this article.
This article is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License ( which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.
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