Strontium isotopic analyses of barren and mineralized Paleozoic carbonate rocks show that hydrothermal fluids added radiogenic strontium (87Sr) to the mineralized zones. At Bare Mountain, samples collected from mineralized areas have ??87Srt values (per mil deviation from primary marine values) ranging from +3.0 to +23.0 (mean of this log-normal distribution is +7.0), whereas unmineralized carbonate rocks have ??87Srt values of -0.6 to +2.9 (mean of +1.07??1.03). In other ranges (Striped Hills, Spring Mountains, and ranges in the vicinity of Indian Springs Valley), ??87Srt values of the unmineralized carbonate rocks are even lower and virtually indistinguishable from primary marine values. This correlation of elevated ??87Srt values with mineralized zones provided a useful technique for assessing the mineral potential of the Paleozoic basement beneath Yucca Mountain, and may find broader use in mineral exploration in the Basin and Range province as a whole.
Additional publication details
Isotopic tracers of gold deposition in Paleozoic limestones, southern Nevada
New York, NY, United States
Larger Work Title:
High Level Radioactive Waste Management - Proceedings of the Annual International Conference
Proceedings of the 5th Annual International Conference on High Level Radioactive Waste Management. Part 3 (of 4)