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TitleCompositional and thermal variations of uranium-mineralizing fluids along the Patterson Lake corridor in the Athabasca Basin, northern Saskatchewan
AuthorRabiei, M; Chi, G; Potter, E GORCID logo; Wang, F
SourceGAC-MAC-CSPG-CSSS Joint Meeting, Abstracts vol. 44, 2021 p. 259
Alt SeriesNatural Resources Canada, Contribution Series 20210212
MeetingGAC-MAC 2021 Joint Annual Meeting; London; CA; November 1-5, 2021
Mediapaper; on-line; digital
AreaPatterson Lake; Canada
SubjectsScience and Technology; Nature and Environment; uranium; Athabasca Basin; Patterson Lake corridor
ProgramTargeted Geoscience Initiative (TGI-5) Uranium ore systems - fluid pathways
Released2021 11 01
AbstractThe high-grade unconformity-related uranium (URU) deposits in the Athabasca Basin are located within permeable corridors developed along intersections between reactivated basement-rooted reverse faults and the basal unconformity. Although URU deposits are related to these structural corridors, only small segments of them are mineralized. Previous geochemical studies suggested that either the presence of reducing or uranium-rich oxidizing fluids along certain segments of the faults were the major factors in localizing ore zones. However, few studies have examined compositional changes in syn-ore fluids between barren and mineralized zones along these corridors. Using fluid inclusion analyses, changes in the composition of the mineralizing fluids were examined along the Patterson Lake corridor (PLC) in the western Athabasca Basin. Fluid inclusion analyses along the PLC indicate that salinities of the syn-ore fluids (measured as the content of NaCl + CaCl2) ranged from 8.8 to 33.8 wt.% (avg. 25.4 wt.%) and total homogenization temperatures (Th) from 64 ° to 248 °C (avg. 128 °C). The spatial distribution of both salinity and Th values does not systematically vary along strike or depth. Bulk fluid inclusion analyses support the microthermometric data and indicate elevated concentrations of uranium in syn-ore fluids from both mineralized zones (0.39 to 93.6 ppm U) and distal areas (0.12 to 1.5 ppm U). These results suggest the presence of uraniferous fluids with similar thermal and compositional characteristics along the entire PLC. Therefore, localization of ore zone is more likely controlled by the rate of fluid flow and/or timing of fluids carrying reducing agents, both of which are enhanced by late brittle fracturing.
Summary(Plain Language Summary, not published)
The Targeted Geoscience Initiative (TGI) 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. This contribution compares the chemistry of fluid inclusions in the mineral quartz from two regional fault zones hosting unconformity-related uranium deposits in the Athabasca Basin. The results indicate that localization of ore zones along structures is most likely controlled by the rate of fluid flow and timing of fluid flow from the basement, both of which are enhanced by late brittle fracturing.

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