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Pressure, temperature, and timing of mineralization of the sedimentary rock-hosted orogenic gold deposit at Klipwal, southeastern Kaapvaal Craton, South Africa
Uppsala University, Disciplinary Domain of Science and Technology, Earth Sciences, Department of Earth Sciences, Mineralogy Petrology and Tectonics.
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2015 (English)In: Mineralium Deposita, ISSN 0026-4598, E-ISSN 1432-1866, Vol. 50, no 6, 739-766 p.Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

Gold mineralization in the Klipwal Shear Zone (KSZ) at the Klipwal Gold Mine is confined to laminated quartz-carbonate lodes, stringers, and associated alteration in sandstone and siltstone of the Delfkom Formation in the upper Mozaan Group of the Mesoarchaean Pongola Supergroup. The moderately dipping brittle-ductile KSZ strikes N-S with an oblique-reverse, sinistral sense of shear. The deformational events that are recognized include an early compressional phase that produced anastomosing shears defined by shear fabrics with numerous shear-parallel laminated quartz-carbonate fault-fill veins and, in places, extensional quartz vein stockworks, and a late brittle reactivation phase that produced fault breccias, displacing earlier extensional veins. Three closely spaced economic reefs (lodes) are developed: the main R-reef constitutes the KSZ, while the J- and H-reefs represent footwall splays. Alteration comprises chlorite, muscovite, epidote, feldspar, and carbonates along with pyrite, arsenopyrite, and chalcopyrite +/- pyrrhotite. An inner alteration zone is dominated by laminated quartz-carbonate veins with alternating quartz-carbonate-rich and muscovite-chlorite-rich laminae, whereas the proximal zone is characterized by alteration halos of K-feldspar, albite, epidote, chlorite, and muscovite along with carbonates and associated quartz veins. Chlorite thermometry from the inner and proximal zones yielded temperatures of 267 to 312 A degrees C. Arsenopyrite compositions provide temperatures in the same range, 255 to 318 A degrees C. Fluid inclusion microthermometry and Raman spectrometry of quartz veins in the mineralized reefs reveal the presence of metamorphogenic aqueous-gaseous fluid with an average salinity of 6.5 wt% NaCl equiv. Fluid compositions and estimated pressure-temperature (P-T) range (1.1 to 2.5 kbar at 255 to 318 A degrees C) are typical of orogenic gold deposits. Devolatilization during the regional facies metamorphism of the Pongola Supergroup is considered the likely fluid-forming event with fluid flow focused into a "compressional jog" of the KSZ. Shear-induced pressure fluctuations generated a phase separation of the initial aqueous-gaseous fluid, producing a gaseous and low-salinity aqueous fluid. This, together with fluid-rock interaction, and a decrease in fO(2) lead to sulfide and gold precipitation at Klipwal. Re-Os data from six sulfide samples constrain the age of sulfide precipitation and, by inference, gold mineralization, to 2563 A +/- 84 Ma, with an initial Os-187/Os-188 = 0.29 A +/- 0.08 (MSWD = 0.38). This age is distinctly younger than the post-Pongola granites (2863-2721 Ma), ruling out the association of granite emplacement with mineralization. This would suggest that mineralization is linked to the regional D-3 folding event which reactivated the KSZ after emplacement of the post-Pongola granites and that final brittle, post-mineralization reactivation is related to Karoo age faulting. Low initial Os values suggest that ore fluid interacted with mafic rocks, leaching non-radiogenic Os, the likely source being the deeper seated Nsuze Group volcanics and/or the greenstone belts that underlie the Pongola Supergroup.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
2015. Vol. 50, no 6, 739-766 p.
Keyword [en]
Orogenic gold deposits, Fluid inclusions, Klipwal, Kaapvaal Craton, South Africa
National Category
Earth and Related Environmental Sciences
URN: urn:nbn:se:uu:diva-260824DOI: 10.1007/s00126-014-0573-9ISI: 000358785700007OAI: oai:DiVA.org:uu-260824DiVA: diva2:849245
Available from: 2015-08-27 Created: 2015-08-25 Last updated: 2015-08-27Bibliographically approved

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Chinnasamy, Sakthi Saravanan
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