Unravelling the 3D architecture of ore shoots and its evolution through time, thereby moving towards a 4D understanding of mineralization processes, requires an interdisciplinary approach based on the capability of carrying out extensive trenching and drilling as well as effectively integrating structural and geochemical analyses. Such conditions are offered in La Paloma district of the Deseado Massif, Argentina. Here, eight epithermal Au-Ag veins are hosted in Middle Jurassic volcanic rocks (Bajo Pobre Formation). The Au-Ag (Zn, Pb, Mo and Cu) Sulfuro Vein, representing the main ore body in the district, is a 750 m long, N to NW striking structure extending 230 m at depth. The geometry and distribution of ore shoots within the Sulfuro Vein are controlled by: (i) lithological and structural features, (ii) metal concentration, (iii) temperature of the fluids at the time of ore deposition, and (iv) remobilization processes. The highest values of Au, Ag, Cu, Mo, Pb, Zn and Sb are concentrated at depths between 50 and 100 m.a.s.l., while high Mo values occur also at greater depths in the southern segment of the vein. Molybdenum distribution in shallower sectors of the vein is controlled by its remobilization by later infill stages. The Au, Ag and Cu ore shoots are widely distributed in the southern and central segments of the vein, as are the areas of greater vein thickness. These ore shoots exhibit a sub-horizontal geometry consistent with dominant extensional faulting during mineralization. In the northern segment of the vein, the Au, Ag and Cu ore shoots are discontinuous and small, and show gentle to moderate plunges probably associated with variable fault kinematics and depletion of the fluid in these metals. Ore-shoots of Mo, Pb and Zn display high values along the longitudinal section and sub-horizontal geometry in the central and northern sectors of the vein, with high-grade Mo ore shoots decreasing to the north. The fact that Pb and Zn high grades extend up to the tip of the northern vein segment suggests that these metals continued to precipitate at lower temperatures, favoured by the permeability of the volcaniclastic units. All of the ore shoots exhibit steeper plunges towards the southern termination of the vein. Here, upward fluid flow may have been enhanced by the dilation associated with oblique-slip along the N-S striking segment of the steeply dipping Sulfuro Vein. The geochemical distribution of metals shows a slight vertical zonation and a distinct lateral zonation, which suggest hydrothermal fluids flowed northward from deeper zones in the southern sector of the vein.

The Au-Ag (Zn, Pb, Mo, Cu) Sulfuro Vein, La Paloma district, Deseado Massif, Argentina: Geochemical characterization and new insights into the 4D evolution of ore shoots

Mazzoli, S;
2022-01-01

Abstract

Unravelling the 3D architecture of ore shoots and its evolution through time, thereby moving towards a 4D understanding of mineralization processes, requires an interdisciplinary approach based on the capability of carrying out extensive trenching and drilling as well as effectively integrating structural and geochemical analyses. Such conditions are offered in La Paloma district of the Deseado Massif, Argentina. Here, eight epithermal Au-Ag veins are hosted in Middle Jurassic volcanic rocks (Bajo Pobre Formation). The Au-Ag (Zn, Pb, Mo and Cu) Sulfuro Vein, representing the main ore body in the district, is a 750 m long, N to NW striking structure extending 230 m at depth. The geometry and distribution of ore shoots within the Sulfuro Vein are controlled by: (i) lithological and structural features, (ii) metal concentration, (iii) temperature of the fluids at the time of ore deposition, and (iv) remobilization processes. The highest values of Au, Ag, Cu, Mo, Pb, Zn and Sb are concentrated at depths between 50 and 100 m.a.s.l., while high Mo values occur also at greater depths in the southern segment of the vein. Molybdenum distribution in shallower sectors of the vein is controlled by its remobilization by later infill stages. The Au, Ag and Cu ore shoots are widely distributed in the southern and central segments of the vein, as are the areas of greater vein thickness. These ore shoots exhibit a sub-horizontal geometry consistent with dominant extensional faulting during mineralization. In the northern segment of the vein, the Au, Ag and Cu ore shoots are discontinuous and small, and show gentle to moderate plunges probably associated with variable fault kinematics and depletion of the fluid in these metals. Ore-shoots of Mo, Pb and Zn display high values along the longitudinal section and sub-horizontal geometry in the central and northern sectors of the vein, with high-grade Mo ore shoots decreasing to the north. The fact that Pb and Zn high grades extend up to the tip of the northern vein segment suggests that these metals continued to precipitate at lower temperatures, favoured by the permeability of the volcaniclastic units. All of the ore shoots exhibit steeper plunges towards the southern termination of the vein. Here, upward fluid flow may have been enhanced by the dilation associated with oblique-slip along the N-S striking segment of the steeply dipping Sulfuro Vein. The geochemical distribution of metals shows a slight vertical zonation and a distinct lateral zonation, which suggest hydrothermal fluids flowed northward from deeper zones in the southern sector of the vein.
2022
262
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Utilizza questo identificativo per citare o creare un link a questo documento: https://hdl.handle.net/11581/468715
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