Geochemistry of the Paleocene-Eocene and Miocene-Pliocene clayey materials of the eastern part of the Wouri River (Douala sub-basin, Cameroon): Influence of parent rocks
Major and trace element concentrations of clay deposits of the Missole II and Bomkoul respectively from the Paleocene-Eocene N'Kapa Formation and the Miocene-Pliocene-Matanda-Wouri Formation in the eastern part of the Wouri River in the Douala sub-basin of Cameroon have been investigated to identify the parent rocks. To carry out this study, X-ray diffraction, inductively coupled plasma-atomic emission spectrometry (ICP/AES) and inductively coupled plasma-mass spectrometry (ICP/MS) were performed to determine respectively the mineralogical and chemical data of Missole II and Bomkoul clayey materials. Clay sediments are essentially kaolinitic and illitic, and kaolinitic and smectitic respectively in both sites. They are generally siliceous, aluminous with small iron and bases (MgO, CaO, Na2O, and K2O) contents. Samples of Missole II profiles are more siliceous than those from the Bomkoul grey and dark grey clayey materials. Clayey materials have high Chemical Index of Alteration (CIA = 80-99.34) which suggests that they are strongly weathered under humid tropical climate before and after their deposition in the coastal plain. The value of Eu/Eu* (0.48-0.61), La/Sc (2.15-20.50), Th/Sc (0.74-2.25), Th/Co (1.08-8.33), and Cr/Th (5.24-13.55) ratios support essentially a silicic or felsic parent rocks. Total REE concentrations reflect the variations in their grain-size fractions. Chondrite-normalised REE patterns with LREE enrichment, flat HREE, and negative Eu anomaly are attributed essentially to silicic or felsic parent rocks like those from weathered materials developed from the gneisses around the coastal plain in the littoral part of Cameroon (Noa Tang et al., 2012), main characteristic of Paleocene-Eocene and Miocene-Pliocene clay sediments of Missole II and Bomkoul areas.