Epithermal Style Iron Oxide(-Cu-Au) (=IOCG) Vein Systems and Related Alteration

Persistent Link:
http://hdl.handle.net/10150/203504
Title:
Epithermal Style Iron Oxide(-Cu-Au) (=IOCG) Vein Systems and Related Alteration
Author:
Kreiner, Douglas Cory
Issue Date:
2011
Publisher:
The University of Arizona.
Rights:
Copyright © is held by the author. Digital access to this material is made possible by the University Libraries, University of Arizona. Further transmission, reproduction or presentation (such as public display or performance) of protected items is prohibited except with permission of the author.
Abstract:
The Copiapó region in northern Chile contains numerous intrusion- and volcanichosted IOCG vein systems. These veins share many features with larger IOCG systems in the region (e.g., Candelaria, Punta del Cobre), including abundant hydrothermal magnetite or hematite ± Cu, Au, REE, and other elements, and exhibit similar styles of mineralization including voluminous breccias, stockwork, and massive veins. The relatively simple geometries and small size of veins offer advantages for study of zoning and genesis in an IOCG system; and, they also provide an interesting counterpoint to classic epithermal Ag-Au veins. The vein systems exhibit systematic patterns in the alteration and mineralization zoning in both time and space. Deeper exposures are characterized by high-temperature styles of sodic and sodic(-calcic) alteration with Fe and Cu depleted vein fill assemblages. This passes upwards through a proximal zone of magnetite-dominated vein fill with sparse to absent copper, and into a magnetite-dominated, copper-bearing portion of the vein. Copper is best developed at intermediate to shallow levels in association with the hematite-dominated portions of the system. More distal, carbonate dominated facies with minor hematite and chalcopyrite are also present. Shallow levels of the vein system may be characterized by a low-sulfur style of advanced argillic alteration, that may be stratabound, in discordant breccia bodies, or structurally controlled on faults. The assemblages differ from other ore forming environments by their lack of sulfide and/or sulfate minerals, and the abundance of hypogene iron oxide phases (hematite and/or magnetite). Vein systems are dominated by brecciation events that record repeated, cyclic pulses of mineralizing fluids. Stable and radiogenic isotopic analyses, combined with fluid inclusion and mineral phase equilibria indicate the fluids were hypersaline brines (generally >40 wt% NaCl(eq)) over a temperature range of 200º-450ºC. The shallow formation, structural styles, repeated mineralization events, and size of the IOCG vein systems have many parallels to the classic precious-metal rich Ag-Au epithermal systems. Nonetheless, the two types of veins differ in their geochemistry, reflecting the large differences in fluid salinities, commonly <10 wt% NaCl(eq) in epithermal settings as compared to 15 to > 50 wt% NaCl(eq) in IOCG systems.
Type:
text; Electronic Dissertation
Keywords:
Epithermal; Hydrothermal alteration; IOCG; Vein systems; Geosciences; Advanced argillic alteration; Chile
Degree Name:
Ph.D.
Degree Level:
doctoral
Degree Program:
Graduate College; Geosciences
Degree Grantor:
University of Arizona
Advisor:
Barton, Mark D.

Full metadata record

DC FieldValue Language
dc.language.isoenen_US
dc.titleEpithermal Style Iron Oxide(-Cu-Au) (=IOCG) Vein Systems and Related Alterationen_US
dc.creatorKreiner, Douglas Coryen_US
dc.contributor.authorKreiner, Douglas Coryen_US
dc.date.issued2011-
dc.publisherThe University of Arizona.en_US
dc.rightsCopyright © is held by the author. Digital access to this material is made possible by the University Libraries, University of Arizona. Further transmission, reproduction or presentation (such as public display or performance) of protected items is prohibited except with permission of the author.en_US
dc.description.abstractThe Copiapó region in northern Chile contains numerous intrusion- and volcanichosted IOCG vein systems. These veins share many features with larger IOCG systems in the region (e.g., Candelaria, Punta del Cobre), including abundant hydrothermal magnetite or hematite ± Cu, Au, REE, and other elements, and exhibit similar styles of mineralization including voluminous breccias, stockwork, and massive veins. The relatively simple geometries and small size of veins offer advantages for study of zoning and genesis in an IOCG system; and, they also provide an interesting counterpoint to classic epithermal Ag-Au veins. The vein systems exhibit systematic patterns in the alteration and mineralization zoning in both time and space. Deeper exposures are characterized by high-temperature styles of sodic and sodic(-calcic) alteration with Fe and Cu depleted vein fill assemblages. This passes upwards through a proximal zone of magnetite-dominated vein fill with sparse to absent copper, and into a magnetite-dominated, copper-bearing portion of the vein. Copper is best developed at intermediate to shallow levels in association with the hematite-dominated portions of the system. More distal, carbonate dominated facies with minor hematite and chalcopyrite are also present. Shallow levels of the vein system may be characterized by a low-sulfur style of advanced argillic alteration, that may be stratabound, in discordant breccia bodies, or structurally controlled on faults. The assemblages differ from other ore forming environments by their lack of sulfide and/or sulfate minerals, and the abundance of hypogene iron oxide phases (hematite and/or magnetite). Vein systems are dominated by brecciation events that record repeated, cyclic pulses of mineralizing fluids. Stable and radiogenic isotopic analyses, combined with fluid inclusion and mineral phase equilibria indicate the fluids were hypersaline brines (generally >40 wt% NaCl(eq)) over a temperature range of 200º-450ºC. The shallow formation, structural styles, repeated mineralization events, and size of the IOCG vein systems have many parallels to the classic precious-metal rich Ag-Au epithermal systems. Nonetheless, the two types of veins differ in their geochemistry, reflecting the large differences in fluid salinities, commonly <10 wt% NaCl(eq) in epithermal settings as compared to 15 to > 50 wt% NaCl(eq) in IOCG systems.en_US
dc.typetexten_US
dc.typeElectronic Dissertationen_US
dc.subjectEpithermalen_US
dc.subjectHydrothermal alterationen_US
dc.subjectIOCGen_US
dc.subjectVein systemsen_US
dc.subjectGeosciencesen_US
dc.subjectAdvanced argillic alterationen_US
dc.subjectChileen_US
thesis.degree.namePh.D.en_US
thesis.degree.leveldoctoralen_US
thesis.degree.disciplineGraduate Collegeen_US
thesis.degree.disciplineGeosciencesen_US
thesis.degree.grantorUniversity of Arizonaen_US
dc.contributor.advisorBarton, Mark D.en_US
dc.contributor.committeememberSeedorff, Ericen_US
dc.contributor.committeememberTitley, Spencer R.en_US
dc.contributor.committeememberDucea, Mihai N.en_US
dc.contributor.committeememberGehrels, George E.en_US
dc.contributor.committeememberBarton, Mark D.en_US
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