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Open AccessArticle

Tonalite-Dominated Magmatism in the Abitibi Subprovince, Canada, and Significance for Cu-Au Magmatic-Hydrothermal Systems

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Centre D’études sur les Ressources Minérales (CERM), Département des Sciences Appliquées, Université du Québec à Chicoutimi (UQAC), 555 blvd. de l’université, Chicoutimi, QC G7H 2B1, Canada
2
Mineral Exploration Research Centre, Harquail School of Earth Sciences, Goodman School of Mines, Laurentian University, 935 Ramsey Lake Road, Sudbury, ON P3E 2C6, Canada
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Minerals 2020, 10(3), 242; https://doi.org/10.3390/min10030242
Received: 8 February 2020 / Revised: 28 February 2020 / Accepted: 3 March 2020 / Published: 7 March 2020
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Magmatic–Hydrothermal Alteration and Mineralizing Processes)
In Archean greenstone belts, magmatism is dominated by intrusive and volcanic rocks with tholeiitic affinities, as well as tonalite- and granodiorite-dominated large-volume batholiths, i.e., tonalite–trondhjemite–granodiorite (TTG) suites. These intrusions are associated with poorly documented mineralization (Cu-Au porphyries) that, in the Neoarchean Abitibi Subprovince (>2.79 to ~2.65 Ga), Superior Province, Canada, are associated with diorite bearing plutons, i.e., tonalite–trondhjemite–diorite (TTD) suites. The importance of TTG versus TTD suites in the evolution of greenstone belts and of their magmatic-hydrothermal systems and related mineralization is unconstrained. The aim of this study was to portray the chemistry and distribution of these suites in the Abitibi Subprovince. The study used data compiled by the geological surveys of Québec and Ontario to evaluate the chemistry of TTG and TTD suites and uncovered two coeval magmas that significantly differentiated (fractional crystallization mostly): 1) a heavy rare earth elements (HREE)-depleted tonalitic magma from high pressure melting of an hydrated basalt source; and 2) a hybrid HREE-undepleted magma that may be a mixture of mantle-derived (tholeiite) and tonalitic melts. The HREE-depleted rocks (mostly tonalite and granodiorite) display chemical characteristics of TTG suites (HREE, Ti, Nb, Ta, Y, and Sr depletion, lack of mafic unit, Na-rich), while the other rocks (tonalite and diorite) formed TTD suites. Tonalite-dominated magmatism, in the Abitibi Subprovince, comprises crustal melts as well as a significant proportion of mantle-derived magmas and this may be essential for Cu-Au magmatic-hydrothermal mineralizing systems. View Full-Text
Keywords: tonalite; granodiorite; diorite; TTG suite; TTD suite; magmatic-hydrothermal systems; Archean magmatism; greenstone belt; Abitibi Subprovince; Cu-Au mineralization tonalite; granodiorite; diorite; TTG suite; TTD suite; magmatic-hydrothermal systems; Archean magmatism; greenstone belt; Abitibi Subprovince; Cu-Au mineralization
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MDPI and ACS Style

Mathieu, L.; Crépon, A.; Kontak, D.J. Tonalite-Dominated Magmatism in the Abitibi Subprovince, Canada, and Significance for Cu-Au Magmatic-Hydrothermal Systems. Minerals 2020, 10, 242.

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