Hydrothermal pyrite chimneys from the Ballynoe baryte deposit, Silvermines, County Tipperary, Ireland

Larter, R.C.L., Boyce, A.J. and Russell, M.J. (1981) Hydrothermal pyrite chimneys from the Ballynoe baryte deposit, Silvermines, County Tipperary, Ireland. Mineralium Deposita, 16(2), pp. 309-317. (doi:10.1007/BF00202742)

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Abstract

We report the discovery of pyrite tubes 0.1 to 20mm in diameter in the Ballynoe sedimentary baryte deposit. Well developed tubes comprise concentric layers of pyrite of contrasting crystal sizes 0.05 to 1 mm thick. An outer rim of crystalline baryte ⪕ 10mm thick commonly coats the tubes where these are not touching. The central canals contain myriad pyrite framboids. These tubes have characteristics in common with the chimney spires found on the East Pacific Rise at 21°N from which metal bearing solutions issue at temperatures of up to 380±30°C. Their presence carries the implication that the baryte deposit was not a distal facies of the Silvermines sedimentary pyritic zinc and lead ore, but was produced from local hydrothermal exhalations, though in a shallower part of the basin than the coeval sulphide deposits which had their own feeders. Some epigenetic mineralization may be awaiting discovery beneath the feeder sites at Ballynoe.

Item Type:Articles
Status:Published
Refereed:Yes
Glasgow Author(s) Enlighten ID:Boyce, Professor Adrian
Authors: Larter, R.C.L., Boyce, A.J., and Russell, M.J.
College/School:College of Science and Engineering > Scottish Universities Environmental Research Centre
Journal Name:Mineralium Deposita
Publisher:Springer-Verlag
ISSN:0026-4598
ISSN (Online):1432-1866

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