A study of the elemental composition of intimately associated coal macerals in the English Swallow Wood coal bed was conducted using a laser microprobe mass analyser, and indicated a similar trace and minor elemental chemistry in the vitrinite and cutinite and a different elemental signature in the fusinite. Three to six sites were analysed within each maceral during the study by laser micro mass spectrometry (LAMMS). Al, Ba, Ca, Cl, Cr, Dy, F, Fe, Ga, K, Li, Mg, Na, S, Si, Sr, Ti, V, and Y were detected by LAMMS in all three macerals but not necessarily at each site analysed. The signal intensities of major isotopic peaks were normalized to the signal intensity of the m z 85 peak (C7H) to determine the relative minor- and trace-element concentrations among the three dominant macerals. The vitrinite and the cutinite were depleted in Ba, Ca, Dy, Li, Mg, Sr, and Y relative to their concentrations observed in the fusinite. The cutinite was distinguished over vitrinite by less Ti, V, Cr and Ca, and K Ca $ ??1 (relative signal intensities). The fusinite, relative to the cutinite and vitrinite, was relatively depleted in Cr, Sc, Ti, and V. The fusinite, as compared with both the cutinite and vitrinite, was relatively enriched in Ba, Ca, Dy, Li, Mg, Sr, and Y, and also showed the most intense m z 64, 65, 66 signals (possibly S2+, HS2+, H2S2+, respectively). The LAMMS data indicate a common source for most elements and selective loss from the maceral precursors in the peat or entrapment of certain elements as mineral matter, most likely during the peat stage or during early diagenesis. The relatively high amounts of Ba, Ca, Dy, Li, Mg, Sr, and Y in the fusinite are consistent with micron and submicron mineral-matter inclusions such as carbonates and Ca-Al phosphates (probably crandallite group minerals). Mineralogical data on the whole coal, the LAMMS chemistry of the vitrinite and cutinite, and scanning electron microscopy/energy dispersive X-ray analysis (SEM/EDAX) of the elements in the macerals are consistent with the presence of micron and submicron inclusions of clays such as kaolinite, illite, and Ca-rich or Ca-bearing minerals (e.g. calcite, Ca-Al phosphates, and illite) which are different in kind and proportions in the three macerals. The variance as measured by the F-statistic for all three macerals indicates generally a nonuniform distribution of minor and trace elements in all three macerals, thus supporting a mineral-matter (inorganic) origin of the elements analysed. Exceptions are Al, K, Fe, Ga, and Sr in the vitrinite and cutinite, which is consistent with organic complexing or a uniform distribution of micron or submicron mineral matter such as illite and phosphate(s). ?? 1990.
Additional publication details
The laser microprobe mass analyser for determining partitioning of minor and trace elements among intimately associated macerals: an example from the Swallow Wood coal bed, Yorkshire, UK