Journal article

Effect of aragonite to calcite transformation on the geochemistry and dating accuracy of speleothems. An example from Castariar Cave, Spain

Rebeca Martin-Garcia, Ana M Alonso-Zarza, Silvia Frisia, Alvaro Rodriguez-Berriguete, Russell Drysdale, John Hellstrom



Aragonite speleothems are increasingly being used as high-resolution climate proxies; however, aragonite is unstable and susceptible to diagenetic transformation into calcite leading to mineralogical, textural and geochemical alterations that have not been fully investigated. To provide some insights to these modifications, this study combines stable isotope geochemistry and U-series dating with petrological observations and EMPA elemental analyses to characterize a stalagmite from Castañar Cave (Cáceres, Spain) that shows primary aragonite diagenetically altered and with reverse ages. The diagenetic processes include recrystallization to calcite, micritization and dissolution. Characterizat..

View full abstract


Awarded by Spanish Ministerio de Ciencia e Innovacion

Funding Acknowledgements

This work was carried out under project CGL2014-54818-P from the Spanish Ministerio de Ciencia e Innovacion. R. M-G is part of the "Laboratoire d'Excellence (LABEX)" TULIP (ANR-10-LABX-41) and the INTERREG POCTEFA ECTOPYR (no. EFA031/15). The authors are grateful to the valuable comments of Editor B. Jones, A. Kosir and an anonymous reviewer who greatly improved the manuscript. James Cerne reviewed the English version of the manuscript.