Gold precipitation: the Big Picture from micro-chemical processes

Cleverley, James S., Hough, Robert, Ryan, Chris, Maas, Roland, Blake, Kevin, and Nugus, Mike (2009) Gold precipitation: the Big Picture from micro-chemical processes. In: Proceedings of the 10th Biennial Meeting of the the SGA 2009 (1) pp. 213-215. From: 10th Biennial Meeting of the SGA 2009, 17-20 August 2009, Townsville, QLD, Australia.

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Samples of gold-bearing laminated veins from the Sunrise Dam Gold Mine (Western Australia) have been investigated in detail using a combination of advanced imaging and analysis techniques (electron optics, proton-induced x-ray emission, laser ablation). This analysis reveals a very complex chemical and mechanical history recorded at the micro-scale which illustrates the complexity of simple vein systems and the nature of gold precipitation. The laminations represent micro-breccias within a pre-existing quartz-carbonate vein. The gold is hosted by coarse pyrite but is intimately associated with the precipitation of apatite, dolomite, tourmaline-muscovite, rutile and zircon. The chemistry of the apatite, in-situ Sr isotope analysis, the mineralogy of the breccia and the coarse pyrite gold-host indicates that two fluids were present in the system. An oxidised, CO2- rich (water-poor), S-poor fluid with a strong mantle affinity and a water-bearing, reduced S, As, Fe-bearing fluid. The mixing of these two fluids during the cracking of a strong pre-existing quartz vein in a weak sheared host rock led to gold localisation and precipitation.

Item ID: 11864
Item Type: Conference Item (Research - E1)
ISBN: 978-0-9805586-8-5
Keywords: Sunrise Dam gold mine; gold; strontium; apatite
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Conference theme "Smart Science for Exploration and Mining"

Date Deposited: 10 Sep 2010 00:58
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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