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Title: The cortaderas zone, Pirquitas Mine, NW Argentina: an example of miocene epithermal Ag-Zn-Pb-Sn mineralization in the Andean Tin Belt
Authors: Slater, Evan Thomas
Keywords: Pirquitas mine;Andean Tin Belt;Puna plateau;epithermal ore deposits;fluid inclusions;colloform textures;dendritic textures;sulfosalts;hydrothermal breccias
Issue Date: 7-Sep-2016
Abstract: The Pirquitas mine, located in the highly elevated Puna plateau region of NW Argentina hosts Ag-rich polymetallic mineralization that defines the southern limit of the prolific Andean Tin Belt. Approximately 500 m north of its currently active open pit is the Cortaderas Zone which hosts the large Ag-Zn-rich Cortaderas Breccia whose nature and origin were previously unknown. This thesis serves as the first academic study of the Cortaderas Zone that incorporates data pertaining to its geological setting, metal distributions, breccia bodies, mineralogy, ore textures, alteration and fluid inclusions to interpret the origin of its mineralization. The results of this study suggest that the Cortaderas Zone represents the high-level and distal expression of the richly endowed hydrothermal system once present at the Pirquitas mine. Its mineralization formed in a dynamic intermediate-sulfidation epithermal system where ore formation was facilitated by transient fluctuations in confining pressure that were caused by cyclical opening and closing of the system. These insights into the formation of the Cortaderas Zone have implications for understanding the formation and subsequent modification of ores in epithermal settings globally.
Appears in Collections:Earth Sciences / Sciences de la Terre - Master's Theses
Master's Theses

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