Abstract

The Mackinaw mine ore is of an unusual or unique type, consisting chiefly of niccolite, maucherite, pentlandite, chalcopyrite, cubanite, and magnetite in an altered peridotite. Valleriite, gold and sphalerite are minor primary minerals; chalcocite and violarite or bravoite are supergene minerals. Pyrrhotite and pyrite are absent. From the textural relations it is inferred that a complex copper-nickel-iron sulfide was deposited early. On cooling, the sulfide unmixed into two different complex sulfides, one of which in turn unmixed into chalcopyrite and cubanite, the other into chalcopyrite and pentlandite. The latter exsolution relationship has not been previously reported. Valleriite either exsolved from, or replaced, chalcopyrite. Late solutions altered the niccolite to maucherite, and introduced gold and magnetite. The gold is almost always with maucherite.

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