Geology of Ore Deposits

, Volume 55, Issue 1, pp 13–26 | Cite as

Rhenium in porphyry copper deposits of the urals



The overwhelming majority of porphyry Mo-Au-Cu deposits in the Urals are related to the low-K quartz diorite minor intrusions of the island-arc type, which were formed from Silurian Middle-Late Carboniferous. In the South Urals, the Cu/Mo ratio of ore decreases eastward along with enrichment in Re. At the same time, molybdenite is depleted in this metal in compliance with more sialic crust and potassium content in ore-bearing dioritic rocks. Quartz diorites at the highest-Re deposits contain 1–2 wt % K2O. At most Early-Middle Devonian deposits and occurrences of the western Tagil-Magnitogorsk-West Mugodzhary femic megazone, molybdenite is sporadic. The Re content in rocks was mainly determined using the kinetic method and to a lesser extent with ICP-MS. A Cameca SX-100 microprobe was also used for study of molybdenite. The Cu/Mo ratio of ore exceeds 600; the Mo content is commonly 1–15 ppm (occasionally up to 30 ppm and higher); the Re content is up to 0.01–0.04 ppm, sporadically increasing to 0.08–0.17 ppm. At the same time, the Re content in molybdenite often reaches 0.2–0.4 wt %. The highest Re concentration was established in the ore of the largest Mikheevsky deposit formed in the Late Devonian-Early Carboniferous and localized in the easternmost part of the East Ural sialic-femic megazone. The Re content in the orebodies of this deposit often reaches 0.2–0.5 ppm (up to 1.4–2.7 ppm) and 0.21 wt % in molybdenite. The average Mo grade of ore is 80 ppm and Cu/Mo ratio is 66. These data and Sr isotopic composition of ore-bearing granitoid and metasomatic rocks [(87Sr/86Sr)t = 0.7038–0.7051; (ɛNd)t = 3–7] testify to the mantle source of matter with insignificant admixture of crustal material. The same is apparently valid for Re and Cu in contrast to Mo. This statement is corroborated by the inverse correlation between Cu/Mo and Mo/Re ratios in the ore. Fluid-crystal fractionation of ore-bearing dioritic rocks is accompanied by enrichment of ore in Mo and by decrease in Re content in molybdenite. In the Tarutino ore field, the pyrite-chalcopyrite mineralization gives way to the molybdenite mineralization in line with in-sequence intrusion of diorite with quartz-bearing groundmass and granodiorite porphyry. Because of increasing silica content in granitoids, the Re concentration in molybdenite commonly remains below 0.07 wt % as is noted at the rare deposits localized in the sialic megazones.


Pyrite Chalcopyrite Molybdenite Porphyry Copper Metasomatic Rock 
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© Pleiades Publishing, Ltd. 2013

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Institute of Geology and Geochemistry, Ural BranchRussian Academy of SciencesYekaterinburgRussia

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