Acidic steam condensates in volcanic systems or shallow, oxygenated geothermal environments are typically enriched in SO4 and poor in Cl. These fluids produce distinctive alteration-induced assemblages as they descend. At Karaha - Telaga Bodas, located on the flank of Galunggung Volcano, Indonesia, neutralization of descending acid waters has resulted in the successive appearance of 1) advanced argillic alteration characterized by alunite, clay minerals and pyrite, 2) anhydrite, pyrite and interlayered sheet silicates, and 3) carbonates. Minor tourmaline, fluorite and native sulfur also are present locally, reflecting interactions with discharging magmatic gases. Water rock interactions were modeled at temperatures up to 250??C using the composition of acidic lake water from Telaga Bodas and that of a typical andesite as reactants. The simulations predict mineral distributions consistent with the observed assemblages and a decrease in the freezing-point depression of the fluid with increasing temperature. Fluids trapped in anhydrite, calcite and fluorite display a similar decrease in their freezing-point depressions, from 2.8?? to 1.5??C, as homogenization temperatures increase from 160?? to 205??C. The simulations indicate that the progressive change in fluid composition is due mainly to the incorporation of SO4 into the newly formed hydrothermal minerals. The salinities of fluid inclusions containing Cl-deficient steam condensates are better expressed in terms of H2SO4 equivalents than the commonly used NaCl equivalents. At solute concentrations >1.5 molal, freezing-point depressions represented as NaCl equivalents overestimate the salinity of Cl-poor waters. At lower concentrations, differences between apparent salinities calculated as NaCl and H2SO 4 equivalents are negligible.
Additional publication details
The mineralogical consequences and behavior of descending acid-sulfate waters: An example from the Karaha - Telaga Bodas geothermal system, Indonesia