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TitleApplication of Quaternary geology in a region with high potential for undiscovered Zn, Pb and Cu mineralization, southern Mackenzie region, Northwest Territories
AuthorPaulen, R CORCID logo; Piercey, S JORCID logo; King, R D; Smith, I RORCID logo; Day, S J AORCID logo
SourceGeological Association of Canada-Mineralogical Association of Canada, Joint Annual Meeting, Abstracts Volume vol. 45, 2022 p. 174
Alt SeriesNatural Resources Canada, Contribution Series 20210685
PublisherGeological Association of Canada
MeetingGAC-MAC Halifax 2022; Halifax, NS; CA; May 15-18, 2022
Mediadigital; on-line
File formatpdf
ProvinceNorthwest Territories
AreaSouthern Mackenzie region; Canada
SubjectsScience and Technology; mineralogy; zinc; lead; copper; mineralization
ProgramGEM-GeoNorth: Geo-mapping for Energy and Minerals GEM Program Coordination
Released2022 05 15
AbstractAs part of the Geological Survey of Canada's GEM2 Program, Quaternary geology and mineralogical studies of till and stream sediments were undertaken in the southwestern region of Great Slave Lake from 2017-2020. Multi-faceted research activities in the study area addressed the broad research question: 'Is there potential for additional carbonate-hosted sulphide deposits under the thick glacial overburden between Hay River to Kakisa Lake and Fort Providence?' Fieldwork involved surficial mapping of NTS sheets 85C, 85F and 85G and included till and stream sediment heavy mineral sampling; no previous surficial mapping or surficial heavy mineral data existed for these areas. The project also benefited from additional samples donated by the Northwest Territories Geological Survey collected as part of former Protected Area Strategy surveys. Heavy minerals were subjected to trace element geochemical and isotopic analyses to elucidate potential mineralization source types, and eliminate known sources (i.e., Pine Point). Sulfide minerals preserved in the till and stream sediments (sphalerite, galena, chalcopyrite, arsenopyrite) were analyzed for mineral chemistry and in-situ Pb and in situ and conventional S isotopes to test potential deposit sources of these grains. Sphalerite mineral chemistry (low Fe/Zn and Ge/Ga) and delta-34S signatures (-18.5 to +22.5 permille) and galena mineral chemistry (high Ag/(Sb+Bi)) and delta-34S signatures, are indicative of deposition from low temperature fluids and potentially derived from carbonate-hosted Zn-Pb mineralization. The Ge/Ga in sphalerite and Pb isotope signatures of galena, however, indicate that these grains could not have been derived from Pine Point and represent a unique, undiscovered source of mineralization. Chalcopyrite grains have high Cd/Zn ratios and delta-34S (-12.4 to +39.7 permille) values that are also consistent with deposition from low temperature fluids and likely represent derivation from a sediment-hosted source (e.g., sediment-hosted Cu, Kipush-type, or MVT(?) mineralization). Our integrated Quaternary work with heavy mineral geochemical and isotopic data indicate a strong potential for undiscovered Zn, Pb, and Cu mineralization occurring in bedrock concealed beneath Quaternary sediments in the region.
Summary(Plain Language Summary, not published)
An update of data from the GEM2 Southern Mackenzie Surficial Activity coupled with new data under GEM Geo-North Southern NWT Scheelite Activity. This is a conference presentation focusing on newer results of mineral chemistry work. The takeaway message here is to highlight the mineral potential of a region with little or no previous mineral discoveries.

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