Alkali/alumina and MgO/alumina molar ratio plots graphically portray both chemical and mineralogical changes accompanying potassic, phyllic, argillic, chloritic, and alunitic alteration of quartz monzonites and granodiorites hosting porphyry (as well as lode and greisen) ore deposits. The molar ratio plots can be used to identify different types of alteration. In most cases, the identification based on molar ratios coincides with petrographic data. In those instances where the molar ratio and petrographic identifications do not agree, the mineralogy might need to be re-examined. Hydrothermal alteration studies using trace elements could benefit from the application of complementary alkali/alumina molar ratio plots.

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