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New (super 40) Ar/ (super 39) Ar dating of alunite from the Cerro Quema Au-Cu deposit, Azuero Peninsula, Panama

Isaac Corral
New (super 40) Ar/ (super 39) Ar dating of alunite from the Cerro Quema Au-Cu deposit, Azuero Peninsula, Panama
Economic Geology and the Bulletin of the Society of Economic Geologists (December 2020) 116 (1): 211-226

Abstract

Cerro Quema is a high-sulfidation epithermal Au-Cu deposit located in the Azuero Peninsula, southwestern Panama. It is hosted by a dacite dome complex of the Rio Quema Formation, a volcano-sedimentary sequence of the Panamanian Cretaceous-Paleogene magmatic arc. Cerro Quema has oxide resources of 24.60 Mt at 0.71 g/t Au and 0.04% Cu, and sulfide resources of 11.38 Mt at 0.41 g/t Au and 0.31% Cu. Alunite (super 40) Ar/ (super 39) Ar dating of a sample from Cerro Quema yielded a final age of 48.8+ or -2.2 Ma (weighted average of plateau age) and 49.2+ or -3.3 Ma (weighted average of total gas age). This age is interpreted to represent the formational age of the Cerro Quema deposit at approximately 49 Ma, linking it to the Valle Rico batholith intrusive event. Based on the new alunite (super 40) Ar/ (super 39) Ar data and a reexamination of published geochronological data, magmatic-hydrothermal deposits such as the Rio Pito porphyry copper and the Cerro Quema high-sulfidation epithermal deposit formed during the early arc stage (68-40 Ma) in the Chagres-Bayano arc (eastern Panama) and the Sona-Azuero arc (western Panama), respectively. They formed in a similar geodynamic setting at approximately 49 Ma, when diorites and quartz-diorites intruded Cretaceous volcano-sedimentary sequences. Cerro Quema and Rio Pito provide evidence for the exploration potential of Cretaceous-Paleogene arc segments. Exploration should focus on Cretaceous volcanic and volcano-sedimentary sequences intruded by Paleogene batholiths of intermediate to felsic composition.


ISSN: 0361-0128
EISSN: 1554-0774
Coden: ECGLAL
Serial Title: Economic Geology and the Bulletin of the Society of Economic Geologists
Serial Volume: 116
Serial Issue: 1
Title: New (super 40) Ar/ (super 39) Ar dating of alunite from the Cerro Quema Au-Cu deposit, Azuero Peninsula, Panama
Author(s): Corral, Isaac
Affiliation: James Cook University, Economic Geology Research Centre, Townsville, Queensl., Australia
Pages: 211-226
Published: 20201228
Text Language: English
Publisher: Economic Geology Publishing Company, Lancaster, PA, United States
References: 73
Accession Number: 2021-011656
Categories: Economic geology, geology of ore depositsGeochronology
Document Type: Serial
Bibliographic Level: Analytic
Illustration Description: illus. incl. 1 plate, 4 tables, geol. sketch maps
N07°10'00" - N08°01'60", W81°22'60" - W79°57'00"
Country of Publication: United States
Secondary Affiliation: GeoRef, Copyright 2021, American Geosciences Institute.
Update Code: 202108
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