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Title: Regional volcanogenic massive sulphide metallogeny of the neoarchean greenstone belt assemblages on the northwest margin of the Wawa subprovince, Superior province
Authors: Lodge, Robert Wilfred David
Keywords: Archean;Superior Province;Wawa Subprovince;Greenstone Belts
Issue Date: 8-Oct-2013
Publisher: Laurentian University of Sudbury
Abstract: The ca. 2720 Ma Vermilion, Shebandowan, Winston Lake, and Manitouwadge greenstone belts (VGB, SGB, WGB, and MGB, respectively) are located along the northern margin of the Wawa subprovince. They are interpreted to have formed in broadly similar rifted arc to back-arc environments, but their base and precious endowment and, in particular, their endowment in VMS deposits, differ markedly. These difference is metal endowment reflect differences in their metallogenic history that were examined by comparing their regional, belt-scale lithostratigraphy, chemostratigraphy, petrogenesis and tectonic history constrained by new U-Pb zircon geochronology. The MGB is the most VMS-endowed and isotopically juvenile (Pb and Nd) greenstone belt. It has a trace element chemostratigraphy that is consistent with a rifted arc to back-arc environment. The trace element chemostratigraphy of the WGB is also consistent with a rifted-arc to back arc geodynamic setting. The Winston Lake VMS deposits formed during early rifting of the arc and their timing is tightly constrained at ca. 2720 Ma by U-Pb ages of the host felsic strata and post-VMS Zenith gabbro. The Zn-dominated VMS mineralization formed from hydrothermal fluids that were <300 ° and were possibly boiling in relatively shallow water. The trace element chemostratigraphy of the VGB, SGB, and WGB indicates a plume-driven rifted arc to back-arc geodynamic settings. The composition of VMS mineralization, lithofacies, and alteration in these belts are consistent with a relatively shallower-water environment, which may have compromised VMS formation. The high-Mg andesites that are typical of, but restricted to, the SGB formed during compressional “hot” subduction, which resulted in the development of a thicker arc crust. This thicker crust may have inhibited VMS formation, but favoured the formation of magmatic sulphide and gold mineralization. New detrital and magmatic zircon U-Pb geochronology allowed comparison and correlation of lithostratigraphy and metallogeny between the greenstone belts. U-Pb ages within the VGB also defined younger, Timiskaming-type volcanic and sedimentary strata that are coeval with similar deposits in the SGB. These strata are spatially and temporally associated with gold mineralization in both belts and are coeval with similar deformation and magmatic events in the WGB and along the northern margin of the Wawa-Abitibi terrane. This indicates that the formation of Timiskaming-type pull apart basins in the northern part of the Wawa-Abitibi terrane were synchronous, and earlier than in the southern part, which is consistent with oblique convergence of the Wawa-Abitibi terrane onto the Superior Province. Detrital zircon geochronology also revealed the presence of a >2720 Ma iv zircon population within the Timiskaming-type sedimentary strata of the SGB. This is consistent with their derivation from the Wabigoon subprovince and suggests trans-terrane transport of detritus in a foreland –type basin resulting from uplift of the Wabigoon subprovince during accretion of the Wawa subprovince.
Appears in Collections:Doctoral Theses
Mineral Deposits and Precambrian Geology - Doctoral theses

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