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Indicator minerals as guides to base metal sulphide mineralisation in Betul Belt, central India
, M.N. Praveen
Published in
Volume: 117
Issue: 4
Pages: 521 - 536
Zn-bearing minerals that act as indicator minerals for base metal sulphide mineralization from the Proterozoic Betul Belt, central India with special emphasis on their genetic significance have been discussed. Sulphide mineralisation is hosted by the felsic volcanic rocks and has similarities with volcanic-hosted massive sulphide deposits in other parts of the world. Synvolcanic hydrothermal alteration is crudely zoned with an inner high Mg-Ca core and an outer wider envelop of Al-Fe rich mineral assemblage. Most of the prospects have strata bound, moderately to steeply dipping, multiple, sub-parallel sheet like ore bodies composed of disseminated and semi-massive to massive ores. Zn-bearing spinel, staurolite, biotite and ilmenite typically occur within the foot-wall alteration zones in close proximity to the sulphide mineralization. Zincian spinel is ubiquitous irrespective of the nature of alteration zone. Zincian staurolite is nearly absent in Mg-Ca alteration zones but commonly present in Al-Fe alteration zone along with zincian ilmenite. Zn-bearing biotite in intimate association with zincian spinel is generally found in Mg-Ca alteration zone, and in the transition to Al-Fe alteration zone. Most of these indicator minerals can be considered as products of desulphidation of sphalerite during metamorphism. Mechanisms other than desulphidation like formation of gahnite by overstepping of the zinc saturation limit of biotite during retrogression to chlorite and formation of zincian staurolite at the expense of gahnite is also recorded. Field presence of these minerals has immense significance in exploration in Betul Belt as they occur in close spatial relationship with the sulphide rich zones and therefore act as direct vectors to ore. © Printed in India.
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JournalJournal of Earth System Science