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Earth Sciences at the University of Fribourg

Bern-Fribourg Master in Earth Sciences

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Details of Master Thesis Topic (Module D):
Stable Si-isotopes in seismic tectonites

Master Thesis title: Stable Si-isotopes in seismic tectonites
Description:One example of rocks developed at seismic speeds are cockade bearing fault rocks, which are preserved in the Grimsel area (Haslital). Such “high-speed rocks” could serve as a key example to understand kinetic stable isotope fractionation. In general, mass dependent stable isotope fractionation is mainly temperature dependent, but can have a large influence from kinetic factors. In order to test such the kinetic factor(s), a simple example have to be investigated (for example natural rocks developed in a short time and in a simple system: e.g., H2O-SiO2). Therefore, the above-mentioned tectonites are a unique example to have data on kinetic fractionation at known temperatures. Such kinetic mass dependent stable isotope fractionation could a start to have insights in the development of fluid-rock system during short time intervals.

The Master-thesis should investigate the stable Si-isotopes of such fault rocks. The project is closely related to structural studies in the area, which are part of ongoing master projects. The project includes microstructural characterization of such fault rocks. After the insights in microstructures different types of quartz should be separated. Such quartz separates will be analyzed by in-house mass-spectrometry. Analytical development for Si-isotopes will be a major part of the Master thesis.
Advisors:Dr. Martin Wille, Prof. Alfons Berger, Prof. Klaus Mezger
Specialities:GEOL
University: BE

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