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δ13C, CO23He and 3He ∕ 4He ratios reveal the presence of mantle gas in the CO2-rich groundwaters of the Ardennes massif (Spa, Belgium)

Abstract : Although natural CO2-rich groundwaters of eastern Belgium have been known for centuries, the exact origin of their gas is still unclear. This paper presents the results of a sampling campaign in Belgium (Spa, Stoumont, Malmedy): 30 samples of both carbogaseous and non-carbogaseous groundwaters were analyzed for major elements, CO2 content and carbon isotopic composition. Among them, 13 samples were also analyzed for 3He/4He and 4He/20Ne ratios. The combination of δ13C (between ca. −9 ‰ VPDB1 and −2 ‰ VPDB), CO2/3He ratio (between 1.9×108 and 2.9×109) and 3He/4He (between 0.92 and 2.70 Ra) shows with a high level of confidence that the CO2 in the carbogaseous groundwater of Spa and Bru has a mantle origin. It can likely be attributed to the degassing of mantle from the neighboring Eifel volcanic fields, located at a distance of 100 km eastwards.

The identity and nature of the deep-rooted fractures that act as CO2 transport pathways to the surface are still to be clarified, but several major thrust faults exist in the Rhenish Massif and could connect the Eifel volcanic fields with the studied area.

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Submitted on : Monday, July 4, 2022 - 1:04:49 PM
Last modification on : Wednesday, November 9, 2022 - 1:42:09 PM

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Agathe Defourny, Pierre-Henri Blard, Laurent Zimmermann, Patrick Jobé, Arnaud Collignon, et al.. δ13C, CO23He and 3He ∕ 4He ratios reveal the presence of mantle gas in the CO2-rich groundwaters of the Ardennes massif (Spa, Belgium). Hydrology and Earth System Sciences, 2022, 26, pp.2637-2648. ⟨10.5194/hess-26-2637-2022⟩. ⟨insu-03712868⟩

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