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Mineralogy and titanite geochronology of the Caojiaba W deposit, Xiangzhong metallogenic province, southern China: implications for a distal reduced skarn W formation

  • Guiqing Xie
  • Jingwen Mao
  • Leon Bagas
  • Bin Fu
  • Zhiyuan Zhang
Article

Abstract

The Caojiaba tungsten deposit (19.03 Mt@ 0.37 wt% WO3) is hosted by skarn along the contact between clastic and carbonate rocks in the Xiangzhong Metallogenic Province of southern China. The deposit is characterized by an early prograde skarn containing low andraditic garnet (Ad0.7–21.9) and hedenbergitic pyroxene (Hd52.9–77.3) overprinted by a retrograde biotite–chlorite assemblage and then by quartz–scheelite veins, similar to well-studied reduced tungsten skarns worldwide. Scheelite has low MoO3 (0.01–0.16 wt%), and ore commonly contains up to 1.5 ppm Au and up to 0.33 wt% Sb. Sensitive high-resolution ion microprobe (SHRIMP) U–Pb analyses of hydrothermal titanite coexisting with scheelite in three skarn ore samples provide ages between 206 ± 5 Ma and 196 ± 3 Ma (2σ). Our new ages demonstrate that the tungsten mineralization took place at Caojiaba between 206 and 196 Ma, overlapping the 228–201 Ma emplacement age of granitic rocks in the Xiangzhong Metallogenic Province. Mineralogical and geochronological evidence collectively indicates that Caojiaba is a distal reduced W skarn deposit. The 226–196 Ma granite-related W mineralization recognized throughout the province has a possible link with the widespread Sb–Au mineralization in the region.

Keywords

Caojiaba Distal reduced skarn Tungsten deposit Titanite dating South China 

Notes

Acknowledgments

This work was supported by the National Basic Research Program of China (2014CB440902) and the National Science Foundation of China (41573042, 41430314 and 41372090). We thank the No. 407 Geological Team of the Bureau of Geology and Mineral Exploration and Development of Hunan Province. We also thank Dr. Zhu Qiaoqiao, Li Wei, Chen Zhenyu, Chen Lei, and Chen Xiaodan for their assistance during fieldwork and analyses. Associate Editor Rolf Romer, Editor Georges Beaudoin, Richard Tosdal, and an anonymous reviewer are thanked for constructive reviews that greatly improved the quality of this paper. We truly appreciate the constructive comments and detailed editing by Richard Goldfarb.

Supplementary material

126_2018_816_MOESM1_ESM.doc (120 kb)
ESM 1 Compilation of isotopic ages for Late Triassic granitic rocks and tungsten deposits in XZMP in southern China (DOC 120 kb)
126_2018_816_MOESM2_ESM.xls (54 kb)
ESM 2 Electron probe microanalysis results (wt%) of garnet, pyroxene, titanite, and scheelite from the Caojiaba tungsten deposit (XLS 54 kb)
126_2018_816_MOESM3_ESM.doc (224 kb)
ESM 3 SHRIMP U–Pb isotopic data of titanite from the Caojiaba tungsten deposit (DOC 224 kb)

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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag GmbH Germany, part of Springer Nature 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  • Guiqing Xie
    • 1
  • Jingwen Mao
    • 1
  • Leon Bagas
    • 1
    • 2
  • Bin Fu
    • 3
  • Zhiyuan Zhang
    • 1
  1. 1.Key Laboratory of Metallogeny and Mineral Assessment, Ministry of Land and Resources of the People’s Republic of China (MLR), Institute of Mineral ResourcesChinese Academy of Geological SciencesBeijingPeople’s Republic of China
  2. 2.Centre for Exploration TargetingThe University of Western AustraliaCrawleyAustralia
  3. 3.Research School of Earth SciencesThe Australian National UniversityCanberraAustralia

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