An intrusion-related origin for Cu–Au mineralization in iron oxide–copper–gold (IOCG) provinces

Pollard, Peter J. (2006) An intrusion-related origin for Cu–Au mineralization in iron oxide–copper–gold (IOCG) provinces. Mineralium Deposita, 41 (2). pp. 179-187.

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Major Cu–Au deposits of iron oxide–copper–gold (IOCG) style are temporally associated with oxidized, potassic granitoids similar to those linked to major porphyry Cu–Au deposits. Stable and radiogenic isotope evidence indicates fluids and ore components were likely sourced from the intrusions. IOCG deposits form over a range of crustal levels because CO2-rich fluids separate from the magmas at higher pressures than in CO2-poor systems, thereby, promoting partitioning of H2O, Cl and metals to the fluid phase. At deep levels, the magma–fluid system cannot generate sufficient mechanical energy to fracture the host rocks as in porphyry systems and the IOCG deposits therefore form in a variety of fault-related structural traps where the magmatic fluids may mix with other fluids to promote ore formation. At shallow levels, the IOCG deposits form breccia and fracture-hosted mineralization styles similar to the hydrothermal intrusive breccias and sulphide vein systems that characterize many porphyry Cu–Au deposits. The fluids associated with IOCG deposits are typically H2O–CO2–salt fluids that evolve by unmixing of the carbonic phase and by mixing with fluids from other sources. In contrast, fluids in porphyry systems typically evolve by boiling of moderate salinity fluid to produce high salinity brine and a vapor phase commonly with input of externally derived fluids. These different fluid compositions and mechanisms of evolution lead to different alteration types and parageneses in porphyry and IOCG deposits. Porphyry Cu–Au deposits typically evolve through potassic, sericitic and (intermediate and/or advanced) argillic stages, while IOCG deposits typically evolve through sodic(–calcic), potassic and carbonate-rich stages, and at deeper levels, generally lack sericitic and argillic alteration. The common association of porphyry and IOCG Cu–Au deposits with potassic, oxidized intermediate to felsic granitoids, together with their contrasting fluid compositions, alteration styles and parageneses suggest that they should be considered as part of the broad family of intrusion-related systems but that they are typically not directly related to each other.

Item ID: 4192
Item Type: Article (Research - C1)
ISSN: 0026-4598
Keywords: IOCG deposits
Date Deposited: 24 Sep 2009 07:06
FoR Codes: 04 EARTH SCIENCES > 0402 Geochemistry > 040201 Exploration Geochemistry @ 100%
SEO Codes: 84 MINERAL RESOURCES (excl. Energy Resources) > 8499 Other Mineral Resources (excl. Energy Resources) > 849999 Mineral Resources (excl. Energy Resources) not elsewhere classified @ 100%
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