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    Black shales and mesozonal quartz vein-hosted Au: The Truchas Syncline, Spain and the Harlech Dome, Wales, a comparative study

    Cunningham, John and Gomez-Fernandez, F. and Gonzalez-Menendez, L. and Beard, Andrew David (2023) Black shales and mesozonal quartz vein-hosted Au: The Truchas Syncline, Spain and the Harlech Dome, Wales, a comparative study. Geological Journal 58 (1), pp. 85-107. ISSN 0072-1050.

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    A comparative study of quartz vein-hosted gold occurrences associated with Palaeozoic metapelites in two areas of Wales and Spain combines new, previously unpublished and published data. Metamorphic grade is greenschist in both areas, but very low-grade indicators in the host metapelites distance the environment from the greenschist/amphibolite transition zone required for some orogenic gold occurrences. Basin fertility for Au is indicated by the presence of auriferous pyrites in the protolith black shales in Spain. Only minor igneous activity has taken place in both study areas. Mineral parageneses are similar, with early sulphide phases characterized by As/Co and later auriferous phases by Cu/Pb/Zn sulphides. Mesozonal P-T conditions apply at deposition in both terranes. In Spain, mineralisation typically occurs in quartzites near to the metapelites, but not where the veins are in contact with them, and extensional faulting appears to be a stronger control over mineralisation than geochemical interaction with metapelite wall-rocks. In Wales, both structural and geochemical factors (C content of the wall-rocks and coupled oxidation of NH4 ions substituted in wall-rock phyllosilicates to produce (CH4 and N2) could have a role in Au deposition. In both areas, minor cross-fault systems between larger faults are typical hosts of the mineralisation. Assignment is made to different subtypes of the orogenic gold model but these subtypes share the characteristic of a local source. This has implications for exploration methodology in epizonal/anchizonal metapelite-dominated terranes, where indicators of basin fertility for Au within the protolith itself assume importance.


    Item Type: Article
    Keyword(s) / Subject(s): black shales, gold, Harlech, orogenic, Truchas, veins
    School: Birkbeck Faculties and Schools > Faculty of Science > School of Natural Sciences
    Research Centres and Institutes: Earth and Planetary Sciences, Institute of
    Depositing User: John Cunningham
    Date Deposited: 23 May 2023 15:47
    Last Modified: 02 Aug 2023 18:21


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