Special Issue "From Diagenesis to Low-Grade Metamorphism"

A special issue of Minerals (ISSN 2075-163X).

Deadline for manuscript submissions: 20 September 2019

Special Issue Editors

Guest Editor
Dr. Fernando Nieto García

Department of Mineralogy and Petrology, Granada University, 18010 Granada, Spain
Website | E-Mail
Interests: phyllosilicates; electron microscopy; TEM; defective structures; nanochemistry; crystallinity; low-temperature mineralogy
Guest Editor
Dr. Margarita Do Campo

Universidad de Buenos Aires and Consejo Nacional de Investigaciones Científicas y Técnicas, Buenos Aires, Argentina
Website | E-Mail
Interests: phyllosilicates; paleoclimate; very-low grade metamorphism; hydrothermal alteration; geochemistry; isotope geology; electron microscopy

Special Issue Information

Dear Colleagues,

Rocks affected by pressure–temperature conditions in the transitional field between diagenesis and low-grade metamorphism make up large domains of the Earth’s upper continental and oceanic crust. Due to its borderline character, the conventional approaches of metamorphic petrography or those of sedimentary petrology are not completely adequate to unravel the physical–chemical genetic conditions of these rocks. In general, the system does not reach equilibrium or this is limited to the nanoscale, thus the advance of mineral reactions is controlled by kinetic, thus defective mineral phases commonly occur. This explains why the study of these rocks has developed during decades specific methods of study and consequently its own nomenclature. Powerful tools for the study of such defective phases, with special emphasis on clay minerals, are electron microscopy and X-ray diffraction, which have let to the development of specific criteria of grade and pressure gradients. In addition to clay minerals, other materials such as organic matter, index minerals of basic rocks and fluid inclusions have been also studied. Even though initial apparent contradictions arise, further studies demonstrate the complementariness of the different approaches and encourage their joint use.

In the last few decades, the general scenario, basic processes and fundamental of methods have been established and may be efficiently applied to provide information about geotectonic contexts. Nevertheless, specific aspects such as the effect of low- or high-pressure gradients, or the role of the original material, different of those traditionally considered, together with the role of fluids, are still poorly known and open to debate. Additionally, numerous studies have emphasized the significance of the retrograde processes on the mineral assemblages of these materials.

This Special Issue accepts original research and reviews related with the use of phyllosilicates and related materials to decipher prograde and retrograde geological conditions in the wide field covering from diagenesis to greenschist and blueschist facies.

Please consider submitting a contribution.

Dr. Fernando Nieto García
Dr. Margarita Do Campo
Guest Editors

Manuscript Submission Information

Manuscripts should be submitted online at www.mdpi.com by registering and logging in to this website. Once you are registered, click here to go to the submission form. Manuscripts can be submitted until the deadline. All papers will be peer-reviewed. Accepted papers will be published continuously in the journal (as soon as accepted) and will be listed together on the special issue website. Research articles, review articles as well as short communications are invited. For planned papers, a title and short abstract (about 100 words) can be sent to the Editorial Office for announcement on this website.

Submitted manuscripts should not have been published previously, nor be under consideration for publication elsewhere (except conference proceedings papers). All manuscripts are thoroughly refereed through a single-blind peer-review process. A guide for authors and other relevant information for submission of manuscripts is available on the Instructions for Authors page. Minerals is an international peer-reviewed open access monthly journal published by MDPI.

Please visit the Instructions for Authors page before submitting a manuscript. The Article Processing Charge (APC) for publication in this open access journal is 1400 CHF (Swiss Francs). Submitted papers should be well formatted and use good English. Authors may use MDPI's English editing service prior to publication or during author revisions.


  • chlorite
  • illite
  • mixed layers
  • geothermobarometry
  • Kubler index
  • b parameter
  • retrograde diagenesis.

Published Papers (1 paper)

View options order results:
result details:
Displaying articles 1-1
Export citation of selected articles as:


Open AccessArticle
Evolution of Clays in Cretaceous Marly Series (Álava Block, Basque Cantabrian Basin, Spain): Diagenesis and Detrital Input Control
Minerals 2019, 9(1), 40; https://doi.org/10.3390/min9010040
Received: 10 October 2018 / Revised: 26 December 2018 / Accepted: 4 January 2019 / Published: 12 January 2019
PDF Full-text (4228 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Two stratigraphic sections of carbonate sediments with significant thickness differences and without appreciable tectonic deformation were studied near the trough and on a threshold zone at the Álava Trough. Such characteristics make them appropriate to analyze the influence of a slow progression of [...] Read more.
Two stratigraphic sections of carbonate sediments with significant thickness differences and without appreciable tectonic deformation were studied near the trough and on a threshold zone at the Álava Trough. Such characteristics make them appropriate to analyze the influence of a slow progression of the diagenesis over the original clay suite. X Ray Diffraction (XRD), Transmission Electron Microscopy (TEM) and Analytical Electron Microscopy (AEM) techniques were applied in natural and alkylammonium-treated samples. Diagenesis slightly modified the clay mineralogy, the disappearance of smectite, and the variation in the content and ordering of the I/S mixed layer, with burial being the most noteworthy process. The total charge in the 2:1 expandable layers of smectite and I/S shows a slight increase, preferentially located on tetrahedral sheets, with depth. The data suggest a moderate diagenesis grade for the studied materials. The combination of techniques allowed identification of several types of detrital micaceous phases, as well-crystallized K-rich micas, Na-K micas, mica-chlorite stacks, and illites, with an expandable behaviour after the alkylammonium treatment. The total charge of illites did not change with diagenesis, suggesting their detrital origin. This research shows that the detrital assemblage masks the diagenetic evolution in the basin, which indicates the importance of the combination of different techniques to infer correctly the diagenetic grade in a sedimentary basin. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue From Diagenesis to Low-Grade Metamorphism)

Figure 1

Planned Papers

The below list represents only planned manuscripts. Some of these manuscripts have not been received by the Editorial Office yet. Papers submitted to MDPI journals are subject to peer-review.

Title: Formation of foliations and its related minerals from diagenic to low-grade metamorphic rock in two deformed basins
Authors: Zhonghua Tian and Fei Wen
Abstract: Deciphering the relationship between original bedding, polyphase foliations and its associated mineral assemblage are significant in understanding the process from diagenesis to low grade metamorphism. It is not only can obtain information of strain, metamorphic conditions and overprinting relations, but also can reveal the process of orogenesis. This study, we predominately focus on two different basins to discuss this topic. Firstly, the Liaohe back arc basin is location in the Jiao-Liao-Ji Orogenic belt, northeast of China. Foliations developed in this basin include bedding parallel foliations (diagenetic foliation), tectonic S1 foliations (secondary foliation or axial plane cleavage of S0 folding), and crenulation cleavages (S2). Accompany with tectonic S1 foliation, mineral assemblage in the M1 low-grade metamorphism consists of quartz, plagioclase, muscovite, biotite, chlorite and almandite in the first stage of deformation. The M2 medium-grade metamorphism associated with S2 contains quartz, plagioclase, muscovite, biotite, garnet, (±) staurolite and (±) kyanite. Secondly, the Hongyanjing inter-arc basin is located in the southernmost of Central Asia orogenic belt, northwest of China, pelitic to sabulous sediments in the Basin underwent at least two stages of folding, huge complicated fold interference pattern formed at late Permian to Triassic in the final stage evolution of the Paleo-Asia Ocean. Two stages of brittle foliations (slaty cleavages) were recognized, and pencil structure formed caused by intersection of S1 and S2. Metamorphic grade in these two stages of deformation are very low and without mineral assemblage transformation, which contain quartz, plagioclase, feldspar, lithic fragments, and occasionally with oriented clay minerals. Deformation and metamorphism developed in the Liaohe back arc basin was much stronger than that of in the Hongyanjing basin, which indicated an intensive crustal thickening of the Paleoproterozoic orogenesis in the Jiao-Liao-Ji Orogenic belt.
Minerals EISSN 2075-163X Published by MDPI AG, Basel, Switzerland RSS E-Mail Table of Contents Alert
Back to Top