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Comparison between the fluid characteristics of the Rodalquilar and two neighbouring epithermal gold deposits in Spain

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The operating Rodalquilar gold deposit and the abandoned Triunfo and Maria Josefa gold mines are located within the Sierra del Cabo de Gata volcanic field some 40 km east of Almeria in SE Spain. While the gold mineralization at Rodalquilar is mainly controlled by caldera-tectonics, vein structures at Triunfo and Maria Josefa are not. Wall-rock alteration at Triunfo and Maria Josefa is characterized by argillic alteration (illite/sericite, kaolinite). The alteration zonation around the gold-mineralized vein structures at Rodalquilar ranges from advanced argillic alteration (porous quartz, alunite, pyrophyllite, dickite) over argillic alteration into a regionally developed propylitization. Fluid inclusion studies from all three mines indicate that gold was deposited from low-salinity fluids (2–5 wt.% NaCl equivalent) between 170° and 250 °C. However, the hydrothermal system at Rodalquilar was fed by a second fluid source. High-salinity, halite and/or sylvite-bearing, liquid-rich, and vapour-dominated, CO2-bearing fluid inclusions are assumed to be of magmatic origin. High sulfidation ore mineral assemblages at depth (covellite, enargite, tennantite) and part of the advanced argillic alteration can be related to these fluids. Thus, part of those features which attribute the Rodalquilar gold deposit to the acid-sulfate or high sulfidation type of epithermal gold deposits, stem from magmatically derived fluids which are typical for a porphyry environment, whereas gold mineralization at all three localities is associated with low-salinity fluids, probably of marine origin.

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Sänger-von Oepen, P., Friedrich, G. & Kisters, A. Comparison between the fluid characteristics of the Rodalquilar and two neighbouring epithermal gold deposits in Spain. Mineral. Deposita 25, S36–S41 (1990). https://doi.org/10.1007/BF00205248

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  • Pyrite
  • Fluid Inclusion
  • Gold Mineralization
  • Alunite
  • Covellite