Tracing the magmatic/hydrothermal transition in regional low-strain zones: The role of magma dynamics in strain localization at pluton roof, implications for intrusion-related gold deposits

Abstract : Structural controls are critical during magmatic-to-hydrothermal transition in the formation of intrusion-related gold deposits. They may explain why only some parts of intrusions are mineralized and why only very few intrusions host large deposits. Moreover, most of these gold deposits postdate peak regional metamorphism and were formed in zones of relatively low strain. Indeed, the efficiency of structural gold traps is highest along favourably oriented intrusion/host-rock contacts where mechanical instability maintains high permeability in the cracked thermal aureole. This may be reinforced by melt injections from an underlying root zone. We present a structural analysis of the deformation features of a granite-pluton roof; large-scale dykes and a network of gold veins are intensively developed in this roof, recording a succession of mechanical instabilities. Our gravity survey underlines the presence of a pluton feeder zone located just beneath the mineralized network. It is argued that interferences between regional stress and melt injection in the feeder zone favoured the development of the network by strain located close to the granite roof. This stresses the role of mechanical instabilities triggered by the combined effects of regional stress and melt dynamics in determining the location and size of this type of gold deposit.
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Eric Gloaguen, Yannick Branquet, Alain Chauvet, Vincent Bouchot, Luc Barbanson, et al.. Tracing the magmatic/hydrothermal transition in regional low-strain zones: The role of magma dynamics in strain localization at pluton roof, implications for intrusion-related gold deposits. Journal of Structural Geology, Elsevier, 2014, 58, pp.108-121. ⟨10.1016/j.jsg.2013.11.006⟩. ⟨insu-00914780⟩

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