Skip to Main Content
Book Chapter

Microscale data to macroscale processes: a review of microcharacterization applied to mineral systems

By
Mark A. Pearce
Mark A. Pearce
1
CSIRO Mineral Resources, Australian Resources Research Centre, 26 Dick Perry Avenue, Kensington, WA 6151, Australia
2
Department of Applied Geology, Curtin University, GPO Box U1987, Perth, WA 6845, Australia
Search for other works by this author on:
Bélinda M. Godel
Bélinda M. Godel
1
CSIRO Mineral Resources, Australian Resources Research Centre, 26 Dick Perry Avenue, Kensington, WA 6151, Australia
Search for other works by this author on:
Louise A. Fisher
Louise A. Fisher
1
CSIRO Mineral Resources, Australian Resources Research Centre, 26 Dick Perry Avenue, Kensington, WA 6151, Australia
Search for other works by this author on:
Louise E. Schoneveld
Louise E. Schoneveld
1
CSIRO Mineral Resources, Australian Resources Research Centre, 26 Dick Perry Avenue, Kensington, WA 6151, Australia
3
Present address: Research School of Earth Sciences, Australian National University, Canberra, ACT 2601, Australia
Search for other works by this author on:
James S. Cleverley
James S. Cleverley
1
CSIRO Mineral Resources, Australian Resources Research Centre, 26 Dick Perry Avenue, Kensington, WA 6151, Australia
4
Present address: Reflex, 216 Balcatta Road, Balcatta, WA 6021, Australia
Search for other works by this author on:
Nicholas H. S. Oliver
Nicholas H. S. Oliver
5
Economic Geology Research Centre, James Cook University, Townsville, QLD 4811, Australia
6
HCOV Global, PO Box 3533, Hermit Park, QLD 4812, Australia
Search for other works by this author on:
Michael Nugus
Michael Nugus
7
AngloGold Ashanti Ltd, St Martins Tower 44, St Georges Terrace, Perth, WA 6000, Australia
Search for other works by this author on:
Published:
January 01, 2018

Abstract

Microanalysis can provide rapid, quantitative characterization of mineral systems that complements the field- and core-scale observations traditionally made in ore deposits. We review recent innovations in microanalytical procedures and their application to studies of ore deposits. Case studies are presented examining how microanalysis can provide constraints on macroscopic processes within mineral systems. Synchrotron X-ray fluorescence shows centimetre-scale chemical variations associated with proximity to mineralization in samples from Sunrise Dam Gold Mine, Western Australia. Pseudomorphs of igneous plagioclase and chemically driven recrystallization interpreted from electron backscatter diffraction suggest that the system was dominated by fluid-driven brecciation with very little shearing. Both the fluid chemistry and fluid pressure evolved during a protracted sequence of vein formation and alteration accompanying gold mineralization. A second case study of sulphide mineralogy at the Mt Keith nickel sulphide deposit, Western Australia demonstrates how X-ray computed tomography combined with trace element mapping can constrain the chemistry and dynamics of magmatic systems. Large-scale interaction between silicate and sulphide melts, shown by homogenous palladium enrichment in pentlandite, leads to a large proportion of globular ores with a high nickel content. Increasing use of microanalysis in ore deposit geology is resulting in the constant reassessment of established models for ore genesis though a combination of micro- and macroscale datasets.

You do not currently have access to this article.

Figures & Tables

Contents

Geological Society, London, Special Publications

Characterization of Ore-Forming Systems from Geological, Geochemical and Geophysical Studies

K. Gessner
K. Gessner
Geological Survey of Western Australia, Australia
Search for other works by this author on:
T.G. Blenkinsop
T.G. Blenkinsop
Cardiff University, UK
Search for other works by this author on:
P. Sorjonen-Ward
P. Sorjonen-Ward
Geological Survey of Finland, Finland
Search for other works by this author on:
Geological Society of London
Volume
453
ISBN electronic:
9781786203342
Publication date:
January 01, 2018

GeoRef

References

Related

Citing Books via

Close Modal
This Feature Is Available To Subscribers Only

Sign In or Create an Account

Close Modal
Close Modal