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TitleDistinguishing primary and mineralization-related signatures of chert from the banded iron-formation-hosted gold deposits at Musselwhite, Ontario and Meadowbank, Nunavut
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AuthorGourcerol, B; Thurston, P C; Kontak, D J; Côté-Mantha, O; Biczok, J
SourceGeological Survey of Canada, Current Research (Online) 2015-1, 2015, 24 pages, https://doi.org/10.4095/295531 (Open Access)
Year2015
PublisherNatural Resources Canada
Documentserial
Lang.English
Mediaon-line; digital
File formatpdf
ProvinceOntario
NTS53B/09; 53B/10; 53B/15; 53B/16
AreaNorth Caribou Lake; Opapimiskan Lake; Schade Lake
Lat/Long WENS-92.0000 -79.5000 53.0000 48.0000
Subjectsgeochemistry; economic geology; iron; iron formations; Archean; gold; mineral deposits; mineralization; exploration; metallogeny; ore mineral genesis; fault zones; Algoma type iron formations; Algoma type deposits; geochemical analyses; geochemical interpretations; deformation; metamorphism; rare earths; rare earths geochemistry; rock analyses, rare earth elements; Musselwhite mine; North Caribou greenstone belt; Northern Iron Formation; Musselwhite deposit; Meadowbank deposit; banded iron formations
Illustrationslocation maps; plots; tables
ProgramGold Ore Systems, Targeted Geoscience Initiative (TGI-4)
Released2015 05 08
AbstractAlgoma-type banded iron-formation units are generally Archean chemical sedimentary rocks comprised of alternating layers of iron-rich minerals and chert that are stratigraphically associated with submarine volcanic rocks and localized within greenstone belts. Although much research has been done on Algoma-type banded iron-formation units, their depositional and overall geological settings are contentious due to overprinting effects of postdepositional deformation and metamorphism and the absence of modern analogues for comparative studies.
Geochemical study of the gold-hosting Algoma-type banded iron-formation units at the Musselwhite and Meadowbank deposits provide comparable information on their depositional context. Geochemical tools, such as rare-earth element REE+Y systematics, indicate that chert bands in Algoma-type banded iron-formation record contributions from: 1) seawater, characterized by enrichment in HREEs relative to LREEs, and positive La, Gd, and Y anomalies; 2) hydrothermal fluids, characterized by a positive Eu anomaly and a flat pattern; and 3) hydrogeneous contamination. A detailed study of both of the aforementioned deposits was undertaken to evaluate the origin of the chert in these banded iron-formation settings. A hydrothermal overprint on banded iron-formation from the Musselwhite deposit is proposed to explain negative Ce anomalies that may be due to late hydrothermal fluid circulation in the chert bands replacing the initial seawater component. This hydrothermal alteration phase may be associated with the gold mineralization.
Summary(Plain Language Summary, not published)
The Targeted Geoscience Initiative (TGI-4) is a collaborative federal geoscience program that provides industry with the next generation of geoscience knowledge and innovative techniques to better detect buried mineral deposits, thereby reducing some of the risks of exploration. Algoma-type banded iron formations (BIFs) are generally Archean age, chemical sedimentary rocks comprised of alternating layers of iron-rich minerals and chert of that are stratigraphically associated with submarine volcanic rocks and localized to greenstone belts. Although much research has been done on Algoma-type BIFs, their depositional and overall geologic settings are contentious.Geochemical study of the gold-hosting BIFs in the Musselwhite, Meadowbank mines and the Meliadine deposit provide comparable information on the depositional context for Algoma-type BIFs. A detailed study of each of the aforementioned deposits was undertaken to evaluate the origin of the chert in these BIF settings.
GEOSCAN ID295531