Drift pumice in the central Indian Ocean Basin: Geochemical evidence
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Abundant white to light grey-coloured pumice without ferromanganese oxide coating occurs within the Quaternary sediments of the Central Indian Ocean Basin (CIOB). Two distinct groups of pumice are identified from their geochemical composition, which allow one to define two different origins linked to two separate eruptions. One group of pumice is a dacitic type characterized by high Fe, Ti, Mg, Al and Ca with comparatively low contents of Si, rare-earth elements (Sigma PREE, 69 ppm), Rb, Sr, U, Th, Ba, V, Nb, Sc, Mo and Co, which strongly suggest an origin from the 1883 Krakatau eruption. The other group is rhyolitic and is characterized by low contents of Fe, Ti, Mg and Ca and high Si, Sigma PREE content (121 ppm), Rb, Sr, U, Th, Ba, V, Nb, Mo, Co, and Sc and correlates well with the composition of the Youngest Toba Tuff (YTT) eruption of approx. 74 ka from Northern Sumatra and is being reported for the first time. Therefore, correlation of the pumice to the 1883 Krakatau and YTT eruptions indicates that the pumice drifted to the CIOB and eventually sank when it became waterlogged. However, physical properties such as density, specific gravity, porosity and degree of saturation required for sinking of pumice for both 1883 Krakatau and YTT are almost similar.
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