Variations In Chemical Composition Of Clay Minerals And Magnetic Susceptibility Of Hydrothermally Altered Rocks In The Hishikari Epithermal Gold Deposit, Sw Kyushu, Japan

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Journal Article: Variations In Chemical Composition Of Clay Minerals And Magnetic Susceptibility Of Hydrothermally Altered Rocks In The Hishikari Epithermal Gold Deposit, Sw Kyushu, Japan

Abstract
Hydrothermal alteration, involving chiefly chlorite and illite, is extensively distributed within host rocks of the Pleistocene Hishikari Lower Andesites (HLA) and the Cretaceous Shimanto Supergroup (SSG) in the underground mining area of the Hishikari epithermal gold deposit, Kagoshima, Japan. Approximately 60% of the mineable auriferous quartz-adularia veins in the Honko vein system occur in sedimentary rocks of the SSG, whereas all the veins of the Yamada vein system occur in volcanic rocks of the HLA. Variations in the abundance and chemical composition of hydrothermal minerals and magnetic susceptibility of the hydrothermally altered rocks of the HLA and SSG were analyzed. In volcanic rocks of the HLA, hydrothermal minerals such as quartz, chlorite, adularia, illite, and pyrite replaced primary minerals. The amount of hydrothermal minerals in the volcanic rocks including chlorite, adularia, illite, and pyrite as well as the altered and/or replaced pyroxenes and plagioclase phenocrysts increases toward the veins in the Honko vein system. The vein-centered variation in mineral assemblage is pronounced within up to 25 m from the veins in the peripheral area of the Honko vein system, whereas it is not as apparent in the Yamada vein system. The hydrothermal minerals in sandstone of the SSG occur mainly as seams less than a few millimeters thick and are sporadically observed in halos along the veins and/or the seams. The alteration halos in sandstone of the SSG are restricted to within 1 m of the veins. In the peripheral area of the Honko vein system, chlorite in volcanic rocks is characterized by increasing in Al in its tetrahedral layer and the Fe/Fe + Mg ratio toward the veins, while illite in volcanic rocks has relatively low K and a restricted range of Fe/Fe + Mg ratios. Temperature estimates derived from chlorite geothermometry rise toward the veins within the volcanic rocks. The magnetic susceptibility of tuff breccia of the HLA varies from 21 to less than 0.01 x 10(-3) SI within a span of 40 m from the veins and has significant variation relative to that of andesite (27-0.06 x 10(-3) SI). The variation peripheral to the Honko vein system correlates with an increase in the abundance of hematite pseudomorphs after magnetite, the percentage of adularia and chlorite with high Fe/Fe + Mg ratios, and the degree of plagioclase alteration with decreasing distance to the veins. In contrast, sedimentary rocks of the SSG maintain a consistent magnetic susceptibility across the alteration zone, within a narrow range from 0.3 to 0.2 x 10(-3) SI. Magnetic susceptibility of volcanic rocks of the HLA, especially tuff breccia, could serve as an effective exploration tool for identifying altered volcanic rocks.

Author 
H. Murakami








Published Journal 
Resource Geology, 2008





DOI 
Not Provided
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Citation

H. Murakami. 2008. Variations In Chemical Composition Of Clay Minerals And Magnetic Susceptibility Of Hydrothermally Altered Rocks In The Hishikari Epithermal Gold Deposit, Sw Kyushu, Japan. Resource Geology. (!) .