The Guelb Moghrein copper–gold deposit in the Islamic Republic of Mauritania reopened in 2006 and has produced copper concentrate and gold since then. The deposit is hosted in Neoarchaean–Palaeoproterozoic Fe–Mg carbonate-dominated metamorphic rocks interpreted as carbonate-facies iron formation. It forms tabular orebodies controlled by shear zones in the hanging wall and footwall of this meta-iron formation. Copper and gold are hosted in a complex sulfide ore in tectonic breccia replacing Fe–Mg carbonate and magnetite. Hydrothermal monazite dates the mineralization at 2492 ± 9 Ma. Two types of aqueous fluid inclusions suggest fluid mixing at 0.75–1.80 kbar and ~ 410 °C as the mineralization and precipitation mechanism, which is temporally coincident with regional retrograde metamorphism at 410 ± 30 °C (garnet-biotite). Distal alteration zones are enriched in K, Rb and Cu, whereas orebodies are depleted in K, Rb, Sr and Ba. The copper–gold mineralization at Guelb Moghrein formed during retrograde shearing in metamorphic rocks and contemporaneous hydrothermal alteration. The stable isotope signature of alteration and ore minerals suggest an external crustal fluid source. Fluids were focused in the reactive and competent meta-iron formation. Potassium alteration, magnetite and copper–gold mineralization suggest an IOCG mineral system akin similar deposits in Australia and Brazil.
- Guelb Moghrein
- Hydrothermal Cu–Au
- Retrograde shear zone
- Programme Area 4: Mineral Resources