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In cases when ultramafic rocks are exposed to the fluids, for instance during the initial phase of subduction, ferromagnesian minerals are altered in contact with the water, leading to high pH and formation of secondary magnesium hydroxide, among other – brucite, that may scavenge borate and phosphate from seawater.

Nils G Holm et al.

Geochemical Transactions 7 (7), 25 Jul 2006

Oceanic basement consists of basalts and ultramafic rocks that have relatively low silica contents (45–52% and <45%, respectively) but a high content of ferromagnesian minerals like olivine and pyroxene.

Nils G Holm et al.

Geochemical Transactions 7 (7), 25 Jul 2006

Alkaline fluids are characteristic of deep aquifers of ultramafic rocks such as the Oman ophiolite (pH 10–12 [ 3 ]), the Coast Range ophiolite (pH 11–12 [ 4 ]), as well as hydrothermal systems of ridge flanks (Lost City; pH 9–9.8 [ 5 , 6 ]) and non-accretionary suprasubduction zones (Mariana forearc; pH 12.6 [ 7 ]).

Nils G Holm et al.

Geochemical Transactions 7 (7), 25 Jul 2006

These results may suggest that the chromium component in ultramafic rocks is an important factor for FTT synthesis under hydrous conditions.

Nils G Holm et al.

Geochemical Transactions 7 (7), 25 Jul 2006

However, the recent discovery of alkaline hydrothermal systems in ultramafic rocks, like the Lost City Hydrothermal Field on the Mid-Atlantic Ridge [ 5 , 6 ], indicates that alkaline environments may be much more common on Earth than we thought just a few years ago.

Nils G Holm et al.

Geochemical Transactions 7 (7), 25 Jul 2006

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Alkaline fluid circulation in ultramafic rocks and formation of nucleotide constituents: a hypothesis

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Geochemical Transactions , 25 Jul 2006

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