Analysis of chlorine isotope composition | INSTITUT DE PHYSIQUE DU GLOBE DE PARIS


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Research Departments

Stable isotope geochemistry

  Analysis of chlorine isotope composition



Scientific coordinator : Magali Bonifacie
Lab Manager : Gérard Bardoux




The Chlorine stable isotope lab at IPGP has been founded in the early 2000’s, at the very beginning of the emergence of this new geochemical tool, and thus has largely participated to the worldwide current knowledge on Cl isotope systematics. Since then, our high analytical performances ay IPGP have allowed to encompass a broad field of research.



Field of research led at IPGP and associated publications


- The geodynamic cycle of chorine (Bonifacie et al., 2005, 2007a et b, 2008a et b)


- Magmatism, volcanism, hydrothermalism (Bonifacie et al., 2005, Bonifacie et al., 2007, Bonifacie et al., 2008a, Li et al., 2015, Manzini et al., 2017, Stephan et al., 2020, Benard et al., 2021)


- Transport processes in fluids (Godon et al. 2004b, Lavastre et al. 2005, Woule Ebongue 2005, Bonifacie et al 2007, Bernachot et al., 2017; Giunta et al., 2017, Agrinier et al., 2019, Agrinier et al., 2021)


- Method development for chlorine and bromine measurements in various materials (Bonifacie et al., 2007, Giunta et al. 2015, Louvat et al. 2015, Gilevska et al., 2015, Horst et al., 2019)


- Determination of isotopic fractionation (Eggenkamp et al., 2016, Giunta et al., 2017, Agrinier et al., 2021)


- Standardisation for accurate δ37Cl measurements (Godon et al. 2004a, Bonifacie et al., 2007, Gilevska et al., 2015, Manzini et al., 2017, Wudarska et al., 2021, etc)


- Evaporites (Eggenkamp et al., 2019a, 2019b)



Analytical performances

Chlorine isotope compositions (ratio 37Cl/35Cl) of fluids and gases) are routinely measured with high analytical precision of ±0.03‰ (1SD) for samples containing ≥ 180 µg Cl. Smaller samples can be analyzed with lower precision.


The chlorine isotope analyses require a transformation of chlorides into gaseous CH3Cl, which is then analyzed with a Thermo Fisher Delta V mass spectrometer.


For rock samples, a first step requires the extraction of Cl contained in the sample via pyrohydrolysis and transformation into chlorides (details in Bonifacie et al., 2007).



Lab’s publications (δ37Cl data out of IPGP lab only)

Lab members (permanent or transitory) are in bold font.


Wudarska, A.; Słaby, E.; Wiedenbeck, M.; Barnes, J.D.; Bonifacie, M.; Sturchio, N.C.; Bardoux G. Coufignal, F.; Glodny, J.; John, T.; Kusebauch, C.; et al. (2021) Inter-Laboratory Characterization of Apatite Reference Materials for Chlorine Isotope Analysis. Geostandard and Geoanalytical Research. doi: 10.1111/ggr.12366


Muller E. et al. (dont Bardoux G. and Ader M.) The origin of continental carbonates in Andean salars: A multi-tracer geochemical approach in Laguna Pastos Grandes (Bolivia). Geochimica Cosmochimica Acta, 279, 220-237. DOI: 10.1016/j.gca.2020.03.020


Benard, B., Famin, V., Agrinier, P., Aunay, B., Lebeau, G., Sanjuan, B., Vimeux, F., Bardoux, G., Dezayes, C., 2020. Origin and fate of hydrothermal fluids at Piton des Neiges volcano (Réunion Island): A geochemical and isotopic (O, H, C, Sr,Li, Cl) study of thermal springs. Journal of Volcanology and Geothermal Research, 382, 1-36.


Horst A., Bonifacie M., Bardoux G., Richnow H.H.  Isotopic characterization (2H, 13C, 37Cl, 81Br) of the abiotic sinks of methyl bromide and methyl chloride in water and implications for future studies (2019). Environmental Science and Technology, 53 (15), 8813-8822. DOI: 10.1021/acs.est.9b02165


Stephant A., Anand M., Zhao X., Chan Q., Bonifacie M., Franchi I. The chlorine isotopic composition of the Moon: Insights from melt inclusions, Earth and Planetary Science Letters  523 (2019) # 115715. DOI: 10.1016/j.epsl.2019.115715


Eggenkamp HGM, Louvat P, Agrinier P., Bonifacie M., Bekker A., Griffioen J., Horita J., Brocks JJ, Bagheri R. (2019). The bromine and chlorine isotope composition of primary halite deposits and its consequence for the historical isotope composition of seawater, Geochimica Cosmochimica Acta, 264, 13-29. DOI: 10.1016/j.gca.2019.08.005


Agrinier P. Destrigneville, C., Giunta, T., Bonifacie, M., Bardoux, G., André J., Lucazeau, F. (2019). Chlorine stable isotope ratios (35Cl/37Cl) of chlorides of fluids produced in low permeability clay rich sediments: the potential role ion-filtration. Geochimica Cosmochimica Acta, 245, 525-541 DOI: 10.1016/j.gca.2018.11.013


Giunta T., Devauchelle O., Ader M., Locke R., Louvat P., Bonifacie M., Métivier F., Agrinier P. The gravitas of gravitational isotope fractionation  revealed in an isolated aquifer. (2017) Geochemical Perspective Letters 4, 53-58. DOI:10.7185/geochemlet.1736.


Giunta T., Labidi J. Eggenkamp H., (2017) Chlorine isotope fractionation between chloride (Cl-) and dichlorine (Cl2) Geochimica Cosmochimica Acta, 213, 375-382

Bernachot, I., Garcia, B., Ader, M., Peysson, Y., Rosenberg E., Bardoux, G., Agrinier, P., 2017. Solute transport in porous media during drying: The chlorine isotopes point of view. Chemical Geology, 466, 102-115


Manzini M., Bouvier A.-S., Barnes J., Bonifacie M., Rose-Koga E. F., Ulmer P., Métrich N., Bardoux G., Williams J., Layne G.D., Straub S., Sharp Z., Baumgartner L.P. John, T. (2017) SIMS chlorine isotope determination in melt inclusions from arc settings. Chemical Geology 449, 112–122.


Ivdra N., Fischer A., Herrero-Martin S., Giunta T., Bonifacie M., Richnow H.H. Carbon, hydrogen and chlorine stable isotope fingerprinting for forensic investigation on Hexachlorocyclohexanes. (2017) Environ. Science & Technology 51, 446-454. DOI: 10.1021/acs.est.6b03039.


Bonifacie M. Chlorine Isotopes (2017). In Encyclopedia of Geochemistry – Editor William White, Publisher Springer


Louvat P., Bonifacie M., Giunta T., Michel A. Coleman M. Determination of Bromine stable isotope ratios from saline solutions by « wet plasma » MC-ICPMS including a compaison between high- and low-resolution modes, and three introduction systems. 2016. Analytical Chemistry 88 (7), 3891-3898. DOI: 10.1021/acs.analchem.6b00062


Eggenkamp H., Bonifacie M., Ader M., Agrinier P. Experimental determination of stable chlorine and bromine isotope fractionation during precipitation of salt from a saturated solution. 2016. Chemical Geology 433, 46-56.


Giunta T., Ader, M., Bonifacie, M., Agrinier, P., Coleman, (2015) M. Pre-concentration of chloride in dilute water-samples for precise δ37Cl determination using a strong ion-exchange resin, Chemical Geology 413, 86–93 10.1016/j.chemgeo.2015.08.019


Gilevska T., Ivdra N., Bonifacie M., Richnow H.H. 2015. Optimization of organochlorines’ conversion for Cl DI-IRMS measurements (2015). Rapid Communication in Mass Spectrometry 29, 1343–1350. DOI: 10.1002/rcm.7220


Li, L., Bonifacie, M., Aubaud C., Crispi O., Dessert C., Agrinier P. (2014) Chlorine isotopes in thermal springs of arc volcanoes for tracing shallow volcanic activity, Earth and Planetary Science Letters 413, 101-110.


Bonifacie, M., N. Jendrzejewski, P. Agrinier, E. Humler, M. Coleman, M. Javoy, 2008 The chlorine isotope composition of the Earth’s mantle, Science, Vol. 319. no. 5869, 1518 - 1520. 10.1126/science.1150988


Bonifacie, M., V. Busigny, P. Philippot, C. Mével, P. Agrinier, M. Scambelluri, N. Jendrzejewski, M. Javoy 2008 Chlorine isotopic composition in seafloor peridotites and high-pressure metaperidotites: insights into the oceanic serpentinization and subduction processes, Geochim. Cosmochim. Acta, 72, 1, 126-139. doi:10.1016/j.gca.2007.10.010


Bonifacie, M., Jendrzejewski N., Agrinier P., Coleman M., Pineau F., Javoy M.; Pyrohydrolysis-IRMS determination of silicate δ37Cl compositions: application to oceanic crust and meteorite samples, Chem. Geology, 242, (2007; 187-201. doi:10.1016/j.chemgeo.2007.03.012


Bonifacie, M., C. Monnin, N. Jendrzejewski, P. Agrinier, M. Javoy, Chlorine stable isotopic composition of basement fluids of the Eastern flank of the Juan de Fuca ridge (ODP Leg 168), EPSL. 260, 1-2 (2007); 10-22. doi:10.1016/j.epsl.2007.05.011


Lavastre, V., Jendrzejewski, N., Agrinier, P., Javoy, M., Evrard, M., 2005. Chlorine transfer out of a very low permeability clay sequence (Paris Basin, France): 35Cl and 37Cl evidence. Geochim. Cosmochim. Acta 69, 4949–4961. doi:10.1016/j.gca.2005.04.025


Woulé Ebongué, V., Jendrzejewski, N., Walgenwitz, F., Pineau, F., Javoy, M., 2005. Chlorine isotope residual salt analysis (Cl-RSA): a new tool to investigate formation waters from core analyses. AAPG Bulletin, Geological Note, vol. 89, pp. 1005–1018. DOI:10.1306/03100504040


Bonifacie, M., Charlou J.L., Jendrzejewski N., Agrinier P., J.P. Donval. Chlorine isotopic compositions of high temperature hydrothermal vent fluids over ridge axes Chem. Geology, 221 (2005); 279-288. doi:10.1016/j.chemgeo.2005.06.008


Godon, A., Jendrzejewski, N., Castrec-Rouelle, M., Dia, A., Pineau, F., Boulègue, J., Javoy, M., 2004b. Origin and evolution of fluids from mud volcanos in the Barbados accretionary complex. Geochim. Cosmochim. Acta 68, 2153–2165. doi:10.1016/j.gca.2003.08.021


Godon, A., Jendrzejewski, N., Eggenkamp, H.G.M., Banks, D.A., Ader, M., Coleman, M.L., Pineau, F., 2004a. A cross-calibration of chlorine isotopic measurements and suitability of seawater as the international reference material. Chem. Geol. 207, 1–12. doi:10.1016/j.chemgeo.2003.11.019



Review article

Bonifacie M. Chlorine Isotopes (2017). In Encyclopedia of Geochemistry – Editor William White, Publisher Springer



PhD thesis and students

Arnaud Godon 2001
Véronique Lavastre 2001
Véronique Woulé Ebongué 2004
Magali Bonifacie 2005
Thomas Giunta 2015
Isabelle Bernachot 2017
Etienne Le Glas PhD expected for 2023
Laeticia Guibourdenche PhD expected for 2022