Geochemistry of Sulphides from Papua New Guinea: Golpu and Nambonga North Porphyry Cu-Au Deposits, Wafi-Golpu Mineral District

The hydrothermal fluids responsible for ore production can be distinguished by studying the elemental geochemistry of hypogene sulphides. We compare the trace element compositions of drill core chalcopyrites and pyrites analysed using Laser Ablation Inductively Coupled Plasma Mass Spectrometry to see if the Golpu porphyry Cu-Au deposits are related to the Nambonga North porphyry system, which is 2.5 km away in the Wafi-Golpu Mineral District, Papua New Guinea (LA-ICPMS). Although other mineral phases such as enargite, covellite, and tennantite can also mineralize, pyrite and chalcopyrite are more identifiable, making them easier to work with in this study. When compared to Nambonga chalcopyrites, the Golpu chalcopyrites had higher Au, As, Se, Mo, Sb, Te, and Bi concentrations and lower Ag and Zn concentrations. In both deposits, Pd and Pt were below the detection limit in chalcopyrites. In comparison to the Nambonga North pyrites, the Golpu pyrites had higher concentrations of Pt, Au, Se, Mo, Sb, and Te and lower concentrations of Cu, Zn, As, Ag, Pb, Pd, and Bi. Pyrites from both porphyry deposits have higher Au concentrations than chalcopyrites, indicating that pyrite is the Au-bearing sulphide responsible for the increased Au content. Cu levels in pyrites from Nambonga North, on the other hand, are higher than those from Golpu. Overall, the ore fluids are thought to have been exsolved at various stages during the genesis of both porphyry deposits, despite the fact that these porphyry centres may be spatially and temporally connected.

Author(S) Details

Moira Lunge
Geological Survey Division, Mineral Resources Authority, P.O.Box 1906, Port Moresby 121, NCD, Papua New Guinea, Guinea.

Joseph O. Espi
Earth Sciences Division, School of Natural and Physical Sciences, University of Papua New Guinea, P.O.Box 205, University 134, NCD, Papua New Guinea, Guinea.

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