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Dzhezkazgan and Associated Sandstone Copper Deposits of the Chu-Sarysu Basin, Central Kazakhstan

By
Stephen E. Box
Stephen E. Box
1
U.S. Geological Survey, 904 West Riverside Ave, Rm 202, Spokane, Washington 99201
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Boris Syusyura
Boris Syusyura
2
Mining & Economic Consulting Ltd., 28/17 Gabdulina St., Almaty 050013, Kazakhstan
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Reimar Seltmann
Reimar Seltmann
3
Department of Mineralogy, CERCAMS, Natural History Museum, Cromwell Road, London, United Kingdom SW7 5BD
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Robert A. Creaser
Robert A. Creaser
4
University of Alberta, 126 Earth Sciences Building, Edmonton, Canada T6G 2E3
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Alla Dolgopolova
Alla Dolgopolova
3
Department of Mineralogy, CERCAMS, Natural History Museum, Cromwell Road, London, United Kingdom SW7 5BD
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Michael L. Zientek
Michael L. Zientek
1
U.S. Geological Survey, 904 West Riverside Ave, Rm 202, Spokane, Washington 99201
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Published:
January 01, 2012

Abstract

Sandstone-hosted copper (sandstone Cu) deposits occur within a 200-km reach of the northern Chu-Sarysu basin of central Kazakhstan (Dzhezkazgan and Zhaman-Aibat deposits, and the Zhilandy group of deposits). The deposits consist of Cu sulfide minerals as intergranular cement and grain replacement in 10 ore-bearing members of sandstone and conglomerate within a 600- to 1,000-m thick Pennsylvanian fluvial red-bed sequence. Copper metal content of the deposits ranges from 22 million metric tons (Mt, Dzehzkazgan) to 0.13 Mt (Karashoshak in the Zhilandy group), with average grades of 0.85 to 1.7% Cu and significant values for silver (Ag) and rhenium (Re). Broader zones of iron reduction (bleaching) of sandstones and conglomerates of the red-bed sequence extend over 10 km beyond each of the deposits along E-NE-trending anticlines, which began to form in the Pennsylvanian. The bleached zones and organic residues within them are remnants of former petroleum fluid accumulations trapped by these anticlines. Deposit sites along these F1 anticlines are localized at and adjacent to the intersections of nearly orthogonal N-NW-trending F2 synclines. These structural lows served to guide the flow of dense ore brines across the petroleum-bearing anticlines, resulting in ore sulfide precipitation where the two fluids mixed. The ore brine was sourced either from the overlying Early Permian lacustrine evaporitic basin, whose depocenter occurs between the major deposits, or from underlying Upper Devonian marine evaporites. Sulfur isotopes indicate biologic reduction of sulfate but do not resolve whether the sulfate was contributed from the brine or from the petroleum fluids. New Re-Os age dates of Cu sulfides from the Dzhezkazgan deposit indicate that mineralization took place between 299 to 309 Ma near the Pennsylvanian-Permian age boundary. At the Dzhezkazgan and some Zhilandy deposits, F2 fold deformation continued after ore deposition. Copper orebodies in Lower Permian shale near the Zhaman-Aibat deposit indicate that at least some of the mineralization there is younger than at Dzhezkazgan, consistent with the Re-Os age and with differences in their ore Pb isotopes.

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Contents

Special Publications of the Society of Economic Geologists

Geology and Genesis of Major Copper Deposits and Districts of the World: A Tribute to Richard H. Sillitoe

Jeffrey W. Hedenquist
Jeffrey W. Hedenquist
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Michael Harris
Michael Harris
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Francisco Camus
Francisco Camus
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Society of Economic Geologists
Volume
16
ISBN electronic:
9781629490410
Publication date:
January 01, 2012

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