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TitleThe Slave craton: geological and metallogenic evolution
AuthorBleeker, WORCID logo; Hall, B
SourceMineral deposits of Canada: a synthesis of major deposit-types, district metallogeny, the evolution of geological provinces, and exploration methods; by Goodfellow, W D (ed.); Geological Association of Canada, Mineral Deposits Division, Special Publication no. 5, 2007 p. 849-879
Alt SeriesEarth Sciences Sector, Contribution Series 20070216
PublisherGeological Association of Canada, Mineral Deposits Division (St. John's, NL, Canada)
Mediapaper; DVD; digital
RelatedThis publication is contained in Mineral deposits of Canada: a synthesis of major deposit-types, district metallogeny, the evolution of geological provinces, and exploration methods
File formatpdf
ProvinceNorthwest Territories; Nunavut
NTS75I; 75J; 75K; 75L; 75M; 75N; 75O; 75P; 76; 77A; 77B; 85F; 85G; 85H; 85I; 85J; 85K; 85N; 85O; 85P; 86A; 86B; 86C; 86F; 86G; 86H; 86I; 86J; 86K; 86N; 86O; 86P
AreaYellowknife; Bathurst Inlet; Great Slave Lake; Lac de Gras
Lat/Long WENS-117.0000 -105.0000 69.0000 61.0000
Subjectseconomic geology; structural geology; stratigraphy; tectonics; Archean; basement geology; metamorphic rocks; gneisses; igneous rocks; plutonic rocks; batholiths; granites; greenstone belts; tholeiites; bedrock geology; geological evolution; crustal evolution; turbidites; kimberlites; diamond; mineralization; gold; volcanism; sedimentation; orogenesis; Slave Craton; Slave Province; Yellowknife Supergroup; Burwash Basin; Bear Province; Precambrian; Proterozoic; Phanerozoic
Illustrationssketch maps; stratigraphic sections; photographs; tables; plots
ProgramConsolidating Canada's Geoscience Knowledge
ProgramTargeted Geoscience Initiative (TGI-3), 2005-2010
Released2007 01 01
AbstractThe Slave craton of the northwestern Canadian Shield is one of the oldest and most distinct building blocks of North American cratonic lithosphere. It hosts Earth's oldest intact rocks, the Acasta gneisses. These ancient gneisses are embedded in a large Mesoarchean to Hadean basement complex that underlies the west-central parts of the craton. Although itself poorly mineralized, the basement complex is overlain by Neoarchean supracrustal sequences, and is heavily intruded and cannibalized by plutonic suites that range in age from 2720-2670 Ma synvolcanic plutons to 2595-2585 Ma late-orogenic batholithic granites. Supracrustal sequences, collectively known as the Yellowknife Supergroup, re represented by an early cover sequence comprising quartzite and banded iron formation (ca. 2800 Ma), a thick dominantly oleiitic greenstone sequence (ca. 2700 Ma), younger arc-like sequences (ca. 2690-2660 Ma), extensive turbidite bankets (ca. 2680-2620 Ma), and finally synorogenic conglomerates that were deposited at ca. 2600 Ma or sortly thereafter. The early cover sequence and the overlying tholeiites represent subaerial exposure and then volcanicdominated rifting of the basement. Arc-like sequences formed in part on top of the attenuated basement and in progressively widening, juvenile, back-arc-like basins and contain some of Canada’s largest undeveloped volcanogenic massive sulphide deposits. After 2680 Ma, much of the Slave craton became overlain by the Burwash Basin, one of the largest and best preserved Archean turbidite basins in the world and comparable in size and setting to the Japan Sea. During orogenesis, supracrustal sequences were telescoped, thickened, and multiply folded between ca. 2650 and 2580 Ma, with a peak in crustal anatexis between 2595 and 2585 Ma (the "granite bloom"). Numerous orogenic gold deposits
formed throughout the Slave craton, either as shear- or vein-hosted deposits in deformed greenstones or within the chemical traps provided by banded iron formations in the turbidites. Proterozoic rift-related magmatic suites and arcs around the margins of the craton host a variety of mineral deposits. Finally, the craton was intruded by several hundred Phanerozoic kimberlite pipes, some of which support Canada's first diamond mines.

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