Fluid inclusion studies at the Donlin Creek Gold Deposit, Alaska, possible evidence for reduced porphyry-Au to sub-epithermal transition

Ebert, S.W., Baker, T., and Spencer, R.J. (2003) Fluid inclusion studies at the Donlin Creek Gold Deposit, Alaska, possible evidence for reduced porphyry-Au to sub-epithermal transition. In: Proceedings of the Seventh Biennial SGA Meeting on Mineral Exploration and Sustainable Development (1), pp. 263-266. From: Seventh Biennial SGA Meeting on Mineral Exploration and Sustainable Development, 24-28 August 2003, Athens, Greece.

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Abstract

Donlin Creek contains a resource of718 tons gold associated with illite altered rhyodacite dikes and quartz-ankerite-dolomite-arsenopyrite-pyrite veinlets. The district contains 3 styles of mineralization; early high-temperature reduced porphyry-Au veins at Dome, later low-temperature sub-epithermal ACMA-Lewis veins/veinlets that comprises the main gold resource, and minor late quartz-stibnite veins. Veins at Dome contain coexisting high salinity brine and low salinity CO2-CR!±N, bearing vapor, and formed between 260 to 410°C at 1500-3000 m depth. Veins at ACMA-Lewis formed from low salinity (2.5 wt.% NaCI equivalent) CO2±Nz bearing (2 to 6.5 wt.% C02) aqueous fluid inclusions between 140-220°C at around 1600 m depth. A third fluid, which is possibly transitional between fluids at Dome and ACMA-Lewis, is found mainly around the margins of Dome, and partially overlaps ACMA -Lewis veins. This marginal fluid is characterized by low salinity aqueous fluid inclusions that homogenize between 230 and 300°C and contain significant COr CR!±N2. We propose that as the reduced (pyrrhotite stable) magmatic-hydrothermal fluids at Dome boiled, a low-density HzO-COz-CH4±N2 vapor phase sequestered Cu-Au-As-Sb-Hg as volatiles and transported them into overlying low salinity waters. As these low salinity waters cooled Cu and other elements were deposited at temperatures as low as 230 and 300°C, while Au-As-Sb-Hg were deposited mainly between 140-220°C as a result of boiling. The high CO~ content of the ore fluid resulted in boiling and Au deposition below the traditional epithennal environment.

Item ID: 7668
Item Type: Conference Item (Refereed Research Paper - E1)
Keywords: Donlin Creek; gold; fluid inclusions; sub-epithermal
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ISBN: 978-90-77017-77-7
Date Deposited: 23 Jun 2010 03:50
FoR Codes: 04 EARTH SCIENCES > 0403 Geology > 040307 Ore Deposit Petrology @ 100%
SEO Codes: 84 MINERAL RESOURCES (excl. Energy Resources) > 8401 Mineral Exploration > 840105 Precious (Noble) Metal Ore Exploration @ 100%
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