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Mineralogy and Paragenesis of Ore Stage Mineralization in the Betze Gold Deposit, Goldstrike Mine, Eureka County, Nevada

By
G.C. Ferdock
G.C. Ferdock
Department of Geosciences, Ralph J. Roberts Center for Research in Economic Geology (CREG), Mackay School of MinesMS-172, University of Nevada, Reno, Nevada 89557;
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S.B. Castor
S.B. Castor
Nevada Bureau of Mines and GeologyMS-178, University of Nevada, Reno, Nevada, 89557-0088
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R.W. Leonardson
R.W. Leonardson
Mine Geology Department, Barrick Goldstrike Mines, Inc.P.O. Box 29, Elko, Nevada 89803.
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T. Collins
T. Collins
Exploration Department, Barrick Goldstrike Mines, Inc.P.O. Box 29, Elko, Nevada 89803
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Published:
January 01, 1997

Abstract

The Betze gold deposit in the Goldstrike Mine, north-central Carlin Trend, Eureka County, Nevada, is the largest known, sedimentary rock-hosted, disseminated gold deposit containing 32 million ounces of gold (Leonardson and Rahn, 1996)(Fig.1). The paragenesis of hydrothermal mineralization characterizes the nature of gold mineralization in the deposit. This paper describes stages of gold ore mineralization determined from hand specimen and thin section petrology, XRD analysis and SEM studies; mineral formulae reported are those from Frondel (1962) and may not be exact. The stages result from a poly-phase, mineralizing event that has determined the conditions under which gold was precipitated.

Previous studies of paragenesis and associated hydrothermal minerals of Carlin-type deposits were conducted by Arehart et al. (1993a), Bakken and Einaudi (1986), Kuehn and Rose (1992), Peters (1996) and Peters et al. (1997) who determined relative paragenesis of mineralization in a general one or two stage hydrothermal event. Our investigations suggest that three stages of hydrothermal mineral development are associated with gold ore mineralization in the Betzedeposit: Stage I: Early (pre-primary gold deposition); Stage II: Main (primary gold deposition), and Stage III: Late (post-primary gold deposition). Pre-gold stage mineralization events include diagenesis of the sediments and metasomatic processes associated with the intrusion of the dioritic Goldstrike stock. Hydrothermal minerals associated with an individual stage generally are limited to each stage; however, overlap of the major gangue minerals, such as quartz, illite, and sericite (Fig. 2) is common. Some mineralogical overlap between stages is due to cycling of circulating fluid that

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Contents

Society of Economic Geologists Guidebook Series

Carlin-Type Gold Deposits Field Conference

Peter Vikre
Peter Vikre
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Tommy B. Thompson
Tommy B. Thompson
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Keith Bettles
Keith Bettles
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Odin Christensen
Odin Christensen
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Ron Parratt
Ron Parratt
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Society of Economic Geologists
Volume
28
ISBN electronic:
9781934969816
Publication date:
January 01, 1997

GeoRef

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