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Lithogeochemical exploration for shale-hosted Pb-Zn deposits in south-west Ireland

Gonzalez, Gonzalo Hugo; (1994) Lithogeochemical exploration for shale-hosted Pb-Zn deposits in south-west Ireland. Doctoral thesis (Ph.D), UCL (University College London). Green open access

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Abstract

The main objective of the work was to gain a better geological and geochemical understanding of south-west Ireland, particularly the Carboniferous of south County Cork, and simultaneously contribute to the advancement of lithogeochemistry as an exploration tool. A tentative objective was to discover shale-hosted Pb-Zn mineralisation in south Cork by means of lithogeochemistry. The geological and lithogeochemical setting of shale-hosted Pb-Zn deposits worldwide was studied. The geology of south Cork (500km2) was mapped on a 1" scale and a lithogeochemical survey involving the collection and analysis of 475 rock samples for 26 major and trace elements by ICP-AES was laid out. A data processing method based on petrochemical parameters rather than statistics was developed to convert major and trace element rock data into readily interpretable information of relevance to mineral exploration. The method, which requires no SiO2, CO2 and organic carbon analyses (unavailable by routine ICP-AES) and is capable of processing simultaneously igneous, sedimentary and metamorphic rock data, computes the following for each rock sample: (a) normative mineralogy, (b) approximate organic matter content, and (c) abundances of selected elements corrected for lithological variation, ie. variation between samples in normative mineralogy and organic matter content. Additional work by the author included exploration for shale- hosted Pb-Zn deposits in Australia and Brazil, and the processing of major and trace element rock data from a variety of base metal districts in SE Ireland, central Ireland, Norway, Sweden, Germany, Belgium, Portugal, Morocco, Canada, USA, Australia and Brazil. Work in south Cork resulted in the identification of a Pb-Zn-Cu-rich stratigraphic interval that attains up to 60m in thickness and essentially consists of bedded cherts and carbonaceous, carbonatic, cherty and/or phosphatic argillites with subsidiary tuffites. This interval, which broadly coincides with the Courceyan/Chadian (Tournaisian/Visean) boundary, proved to contain shale-hosted Pb-Zn mineralisation in two localities.

Type: Thesis (Doctoral)
Qualification: Ph.D
Title: Lithogeochemical exploration for shale-hosted Pb-Zn deposits in south-west Ireland
Open access status: An open access version is available from UCL Discovery
Language: English
Additional information: Thesis digitised by ProQuest.
Keywords: Earth sciences; Lead-zinc deposits; Shale
URI: https://discovery.ucl.ac.uk/id/eprint/10100651
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