Supergene metal deposits form when common rock types or deeply buried primary ore bodies are exposed at or near the Earth's surface and undergo oxidation, dissolution and reconcentration of the metals. Supergene metal deposits are economically interesting because of their accessibility for extraction and increased grades. Scientifically they are attractive because of their mineralogical diversity and what they reveal about surficial history. Apart from supplying mankind's need for metals, supergene metal deposits provide clues about our past climate and offer an unparalleled opportunity to explore the long-term corrosion behavior of natural and man-made materials and their environmental impact.

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