Abstract

Chalcopyrite inclusions in sphalerite, once considered to be only exsolution poducts, have been suggested to be replacements of Fe-rich sphalerite. This study reveals that (1) chalcopyrite inclusions were found in sphalerite with different iron contents: both Fe-poor varieties from 0.5 to 2 wt percent and Fe-rich, from 8 to 14 wt percent; (2) chalcopyrite inclusions were produced by replacement as the result of interaction of sphalerite with solutions, which transported both copper and iron; and (3) coprecipitation of sphalerite and chalcopyrite is an alternative mechanism of formation of the chalcopyrite inclusions in the ore deposits studied.

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