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TitleCharacterization of the Paleoproterozoic Hottah terrane, Wopmay Orogen using multi-isotopic (U-Pb, Hf and O) detrital zircon analyses: An evaluation of linkages to northwest Laurentian Paleoproterozoic domains
AuthorDavis, W JORCID logo; Ootes, L; Newton, L; Jackson, V J; Stern, R S
SourceGeological Society of America Bulletin vol. 269, 2015 p. 296-310,
Alt SeriesEarth Sciences Sector, Contribution Series 20140065
PublisherElsevier BV
Mediapaper; on-line; digital
File formatpdf
ProvinceNorthwest Territories
NTS86D; 86E; 86L; 96A; 96H; 96I
AreaGreat Bear Lake
Lat/Long WENS-120.0000 -113.0000 66.0000 62.0000
Subjectsgeneral geology; geochronology; modelling; terranes; orogenesis; modelling, structural; isotopic studies; zircon; Wopmay orogen; Hottah Terrane
Illustrationslocation maps; schematic diagrams; geological sketch maps; stratigraphic columns; histograms; plots
ProgramGEM: Geo-mapping for Energy and Minerals Iron-oxide Copper-gold (IOCG) / Multiple Metals - Great Bear Lake (NWT)
AbstractThe Paleoproterozoic Wopmay orogen is modelled as a classic arc-continent collision involving the Archean Slave craton and an enigmatic continental arc termed the Hottah terrane. The Hottah terrane is proposed to include a juvenile 2.0-2.6 Ga basement to a younger 1.9-1.95 Ga continental arc. The extent and crustal age structure of Hottah terrrane is poorly known which limits interpretations as to its origin, and eventual role in the development of the orogen. Multi-isotopic (U-Pb, Hf, O) analyses of detrital zircon from rocks of the Hottah terrane and its cover sequence are used to indirectly evaluate its age and crustal characteristics. The data confirm that ca 2.0-2.6 Ga crust is an important basement component of the terrane but Hf isotopic data indicate mostly non-juvenile compositions consistent with recycled Neoarchean crust. Ages of detrital zircon are distinct from those expected of the adjacent Slave craton but are similar to 1.95-2.0 Ga Paleoproterozoic terranes of NW Laurentia. The data support previous interpretations that Hottah is exotic relative to the Slave margin but the similarity to nearby Laurentian sources such as the Ksitsuan/Buffalo Head and Taltson-Thelon magmatic zones, south and east of the Slave craton indicate that Hottah most likely represents a pericratonic terrane that evolved within the Laurentia realm and was rifted and translated along the margin prior to collision that produced the Calderian orogeny.
Summary(Plain Language Summary, not published)
The Wopmay orogen, located in the Northwest Territories, northwest of Yellowknife, is a geological region that formed approximately 1.8 to 2.0 billion years ago. The region hosts a number of past-producing mines including Port Radium and Terra, and is prospective for multiple commodities including copper, gold and uranium. Understanding the geological formation of the region is important to develop regional exploration models useful to the mineral industry. Detailed isotopic analyses of the mineral zircon were carried out to characterize the age and origin of the terrane. The results demonstrate that the terrane was not exotic to other parts of North America at that time and is most likely a continental fragment displaced along a long-lived active continental margin. The most prospective time window for mineral deposit formation immediately follows the development of this terrane.

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