Ore genesis of the Bake gold deposit, southeastern Guizhou province, China: Constraints from mineralogy, in-situ trace element and sulfur isotope analysis of pyrite

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  • An Lu Liu, China University of Geosciences, Wuhan
  • ,
  • Man Rong Jiang, China University of Geosciences, Wuhan
  • ,
  • Thomas Ulrich
  • Jun Zhang, China University of Geosciences, Wuhan
  • ,
  • Xiao Jun Zhang, China University of Geosciences, Wuhan

The Bake gold deposit is exceptional for its high native gold abundance relative to the other orogenic gold deposits in the southeastern Guizhou district. The grades of gold can be up to 2 to 3 wt% in bonanza ore, and native gold preferentially occurs within voids and fractures in pyrite, arsenopyrite and quartz. Gold content can be up to 6.9 ppm in hydrothermal pyrite, however, the majority of the pyrite analyses have Au contents less than 1 ppm (mean = 0.32 ppm) based on LA-ICPMS analyses. Meanwhile, EMPA reveals that arsenopyrite has a maximal Au content of up to 0.14 wt%, but most analyses are below detection limit (0.01 wt%). Moreover, native gold grains in cataclastic pyrite and arsenopyrite are commonly high-purity with fineness ranging from 949 to 977. Given that paragenetically early hydrothermal pyrite and arsenopyrite contain variable but relatively high gold concentrations than later generations of sulfide, it is suggested that early invisible gold may have been remobilized to form at least part of the microscopic visible gold. Post-mineralization shear zones, which cut the vein-bearing anticline, may have led to the deformation of the lode quartz vein system on the macro level, and microscopically, sulfide fragmentation and elemental remobilization. Although diagenetic pyrite from unaltered host rocks is enriched in invisible gold with mean values at 0.83 ppm, evidence supporting the release of Au from them is weak. Corresponding evidence comes from the distinct sulfur isotope signatures in different pyrite generations. Diagenetic pyrite has δ34S values in the narrow range of +9.27‰ to +10.75‰ whereas hydrothermal pyrite shows a broad range (+6.81‰ to +17.42‰), based on LA-MC-ICPMS analyses. The Mesoproterozoic Lengjiaxi Group underlying the Xiajiang Group is most likely the source region, on the basis of geological background and assuming the metamorphic devolatilization model.

TidsskriftOre Geology Reviews
Sider (fra-til)740-756
Antal sider17
StatusUdgivet - nov. 2018

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