Exploration for volcanogenic sulphide mineralisation at Benglog, north Wales

Cooper, D.C.; Cameron, D.G.; Jackson, Audrey A.; Allen, P.M.; Parker, M.E.. 1983 Exploration for volcanogenic sulphide mineralisation at Benglog, north Wales. Institute of Geological Sciences, 39pp. (WF/MR/83/063) (Unpublished)

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Exploration for volcanogenic sulphide mineralisation around Benglog is one of three investigations designed to assess the metallogenic potential of the Ordovician Aran Volcanic Group. Detailed geological mapping in the Benglog area enabled an interpretation of the volcanic environment, critical to such an assessment, to be made. The eruptive rocks are acid and basic in composition; the acid rocks are mostly ash-flow tuffs derived from outside the area, whereas the basic rocks have a local derivation. They are all interbedded with dark grey or black silty mudstone and were probably erupted in a submarine environment. Contemporaneous dolerite sills were intruded into wet sediment. This environment was suitable for volcanogenic exhalative sulphide deposits to form and indications of a metallogenic horizon were found at the top of the Y Fron Formation in the form of abundant pyrite, minor pyrrhotite and minor base metal enrichment. Soil samples, analysed for copper, lead and zinc, were collected and geophysical surveys were carried out along eleven east-west trending traverse lines 300 m apart across the volcanic succession. Indications were found of minor vein mineralisation at dolerite intrusion margins and locally along faults. Very high chargeability and low resistivity anomalies over mudstones did not spatially coincide with geochemical anomalies in soil, but the secondary redistribution of metals in soils and variable thickness of overburden precluded confident interpretation of the source of many soil anomalies. Geochemical drainage data, in conjunction with rock analyses, show strong barium enrichment in mudstones which could be volcanogenic in origin but related to two separate eruptive episodes. The findings of the survey were inconclusive. An environment suitable for the formation of volcanogenic exhalative sulphide deposits was established, but the geochemical and geophysical surveys located only minor vein mineralisation and tenuous indications of other styles of mineralisation. Recommendations are made for further work.

Item Type: Publication - Report
Programmes: BGS Programmes > Other
Funders/Sponsors: Department of Industry
Additional Information. Not used in RCUK Gateway to Research.: This item has been internally reviewed but not externally peer-reviewed
NORA Subject Terms: Earth Sciences
Date made live: 01 Nov 2010 14:43 +0 (UTC)

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