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A review of sulfur to selenium ratios in magmatic nickel–copper and platinum-group element deposits

Queffurus Matthias et Barnes Sarah-Jane. (2015). A review of sulfur to selenium ratios in magmatic nickel–copper and platinum-group element deposits. Ore Geology Reviews, 69, p. 301-324.

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Deviations in the sulfur to selenium ratios (S/Se) from mantle values in magmatic Ni–Cu–Platinum Group Elements (PGE) sulfide deposits have been widely used to constrain the ore forming processes. Basically, S/Se ratios greater than mantle values are interpreted to be the result of contamination of the mantle derived magma by S-rich sedimentary rocks, whereas S/Se ratios lower than mantle values are thought to be the result of S loss during post-crystallization. However, there are many other processes involved in producing a deposit and it is possible that these may be also important in controlling S/Se ratios. In order to investigate the relative importance of these processes, we have compiled a data base of S, Se, δ34S and metal values from Ni–Cu–PGE sulfide deposits. This compilation shows that processes affecting S/Se ratios can be divided into two main classes: the magmatic processes and the late- to post-magmatic processes. 1) Magmatic processes include the well-known addition of S from sedimentary rocks, variations in the sulfide to silicate liquid ratio (R-factor), depletion of the silicate magma in Se by early segregation of the sulfide liquid, and the moderate incompatibility of Se into the first sulfide minerals to crystallize from a sulfide liquid, the monosulfide-solid-solution (MSS). This incompatibility results in a change in S/Se ratio between the Fe-rich and Cu-rich zones of magmatic sulfide ores. The fractionation of Se during crystallization of sulfide liquids has not previously been appreciated. 2) Late- to post-magmatic processes include: hydrothermal alteration, high-grade metamorphism, serpentinization and supergene weathering. Some metamorphosed Cu-deposits have low S/Se ratios suggesting S-loss by breakdown of sulfide minerals during a high-grade metamorphic event. However, the effectiveness of this process remains unclear and alternative models exist. The preferential remobilization of S relative to Se during hydrothermal alteration, serpentinization and supergene weathering leads to a moderate decrease of S/Se ratios values and can mask the initial S/Se ratio.

Type de document:Article publié dans une revue avec comité d'évaluation
Pages:p. 301-324
Version évaluée par les pairs:Oui
Sujets:Sciences naturelles et génie > Sciences naturelles > Sciences de la terre (géologie, géographie)
Département, module, service et unité de recherche:Départements et modules > Département des sciences appliquées > Unité d'enseignement en sciences de la Terre
Mots-clés:S/Se ratio, selenium, sulfur, Ni–Cu–PGE deposits, contamination, assimilation
Déposé le:26 avr. 2016 21:03
Dernière modification:09 déc. 2016 14:04
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