Geological setting and timing of the cassiterite vein type mineralization of the Kalima area (Maniema, Democratic Republic of Congo)

Dewaele, S., Muchez, P., Burgess, R. and Boyce, A. (2015) Geological setting and timing of the cassiterite vein type mineralization of the Kalima area (Maniema, Democratic Republic of Congo). Journal of African Earth Sciences, 112, pp. 199-212. (doi:10.1016/j.jafrearsci.2015.09.006)

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Abstract

The Central African Mesoproterozoic Karagwe-Ankole belt in the Great Lakes area (DRCongo, Rwanda, Burundi, Uganda and Tanzania) forms a metallogenic province that hosts a variety of granite-related mineralization, which contains cassiterite, columbite-tantalite, wolframite/ferberite, spodumene and beryl. The Kalima area in the Maniema province of the DRCongo forms one of the most important areas for cassiterite mineralization in the eastern part of the DRCongo, even after many decades of exploitation. The mineralization dominantly consists of quartz veins that are hosted in Mesoproterozoic metasediments at the contact with granitic rocks of the Kalima granite (Avuanga and Yubuli) or directly crosscutting these granitic rocks (Atondo). Only limited – and mainly unmineralized pegmatites – have been described in the Lutshurukuru area. Mineralized quartz veins – and some granite bodies – intruded following the regional tectonic foliation or existing fracture zones, confirming the late-to post-tectonic origin of the fertile granite system. The emplacement of the quartz veins resulted in an alteration of the metasedimentary and granitic host-rocks, mainly resulting in muscovitization, tourmalinization and silicification. Cassiterite itself formed relatively late during vein formation and is associated with muscovite in fractures in or along the margins of the quartz veins. 40Ar-39Ar age dating of muscovite of an unmineralized pegmatite from the Lutshurukuru area gave an excellent plateau age of 1024 ± 5.5 Ma, while the muscovite associated with mineralization gave plateau ages of 986 ± 5.3 Ma for the Atondo deposit and 992.4 ± 5.4 Ma for the Yubuli deposit. The rather large spread in ages between the supposed parental granite/pegmatite and quartz veins is interpreted to reflect different magmatic events in the evolution of a composite granite system, starting at ∼1020 Ma and ending with mineralized quartz vein formation at ∼990 Ma. The latter age corresponds with the U–Pb age reported for columbite-tantalite in the area (993 ± 1 Ma at Kamisuku), which could be interpreted as the primary formation age of a new generation of mineralized pegmatites in the Kalima area, or as the resetting age of the U–Pb system during the ∼990 Ma mineralizing event. Muscovite of a mineralized greisen sample of Avuanga gave a plateau age with relaxed constraints of 1010.3 ± 5.9 Ma, which has been interpreted as a partially resetting of muscovite formed at ∼1020 Ma age, during the ∼990 Ma event.

Item Type:Articles
Status:Published
Refereed:Yes
Glasgow Author(s) Enlighten ID:Boyce, Professor Adrian
Authors: Dewaele, S., Muchez, P., Burgess, R., and Boyce, A.
College/School:College of Science and Engineering > Scottish Universities Environmental Research Centre
Journal Name:Journal of African Earth Sciences
Publisher:Elsevier B.V.
ISSN:1464-343X
ISSN (Online):1879-1956

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