Investigating sulfur pathways through the lithosphere by tracing mass independent fractionation of sulfur to the Lady Bountiful orogenic gold deposit, Yilgarn Craton

Crystal LaFlamme, John W. Jamieson, Marco L. Fiorentini, Nicolas Thébaud, Stefano Caruso, Vikraman Selvaraja

    Research output: Contribution to journalReview article

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    Abstract

    As sulfur is the primary complexing ligand for gold transport in aqueous fluids, recent work has demonstrated that the Archean systems can preserve mass independent fractionation of sulfur (MIF-S) to yield near-zero values (Δ33S1 = 0 ± 0.5‰). In such cases, interpretation of the geological significance of such isotopic signatures may be compromised as it is known that mass dependent fractionation of sulfur (MDF-S) can yield small Δ33S values (herein as Δ33SB) often owing to geobiological reactions involving sulfur. In this study, we reassess the range of possible values of Δ33SB from the traditionally accepted value of 0 ± 0.2‰, to demonstrate that this range is not constant but rather directly linked to the degree of δ34S fractionation. We present a multiple sulfur isotope dataset from the Neoarchean Lady Bountiful orogenic gold deposit from the Yilgarn Craton, Western Australia. This deposit contains pyrite with an isotopic composition of δ34S = ~+2.1 ± 0.8‰ and Δ33S = +0.14 ± 0.06‰ (2SD on the mean). The analysis of these results, as well as of a data compilation from other ~2.65 Ga orogenic gold deposits of the Yilgarn Craton, indicates that Δ33S1 values are too large to be the result of purely MDF-S processes. In addition, when compared to a compilation of >3400 Δ33S0 measurements of Archean sedimentary rocks, which shows highly variable positive and negative signals, the remarkably constant positive MIF-S1 signature of gold deposits from the Yilgarn Craton, with Δ33S1 values between 0 and +0.6‰, is evidence that the source of the auriferous fluids equilibrated at depth by mixing with a non MIF-S0-bearing sulfur reservoir. By enhancing the application of MIF-S133S1) as a powerful and indelible tracer to understand the source and emplacement pathways of gold-bearing fluids through the lithosphere, the outcomes from this study demonstrate the recorded +Δ33S1 signature in the auriferous fluids reflects the presence of sulfur that was at least partially sourced from an Archean sediment reservoir.

    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)27-38
    Number of pages12
    JournalGondwana Research
    Volume58
    DOIs
    Publication statusPublished - 1 Jun 2018

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    craton
    lithosphere
    fractionation
    gold
    sulfur
    Archean
    fluid
    sulfur isotope
    ligand
    sedimentary rock
    pyrite
    emplacement
    isotopic composition
    tracer
    sediment

    Cite this

    @article{69679e88d30e45b69a5cb8d4572589a3,
    title = "Investigating sulfur pathways through the lithosphere by tracing mass independent fractionation of sulfur to the Lady Bountiful orogenic gold deposit, Yilgarn Craton",
    abstract = "As sulfur is the primary complexing ligand for gold transport in aqueous fluids, recent work has demonstrated that the Archean systems can preserve mass independent fractionation of sulfur (MIF-S) to yield near-zero values (Δ33S1 = 0 ± 0.5‰). In such cases, interpretation of the geological significance of such isotopic signatures may be compromised as it is known that mass dependent fractionation of sulfur (MDF-S) can yield small Δ33S values (herein as Δ33SB) often owing to geobiological reactions involving sulfur. In this study, we reassess the range of possible values of Δ33SB from the traditionally accepted value of 0 ± 0.2‰, to demonstrate that this range is not constant but rather directly linked to the degree of δ34S fractionation. We present a multiple sulfur isotope dataset from the Neoarchean Lady Bountiful orogenic gold deposit from the Yilgarn Craton, Western Australia. This deposit contains pyrite with an isotopic composition of δ34S = ~+2.1 ± 0.8‰ and Δ33S = +0.14 ± 0.06‰ (2SD on the mean). The analysis of these results, as well as of a data compilation from other ~2.65 Ga orogenic gold deposits of the Yilgarn Craton, indicates that Δ33S1 values are too large to be the result of purely MDF-S processes. In addition, when compared to a compilation of >3400 Δ33S0 measurements of Archean sedimentary rocks, which shows highly variable positive and negative signals, the remarkably constant positive MIF-S1 signature of gold deposits from the Yilgarn Craton, with Δ33S1 values between 0 and +0.6‰, is evidence that the source of the auriferous fluids equilibrated at depth by mixing with a non MIF-S0-bearing sulfur reservoir. By enhancing the application of MIF-S1 (Δ33S1) as a powerful and indelible tracer to understand the source and emplacement pathways of gold-bearing fluids through the lithosphere, the outcomes from this study demonstrate the recorded +Δ33S1 signature in the auriferous fluids reflects the presence of sulfur that was at least partially sourced from an Archean sediment reservoir.",
    keywords = "MIF-S, Orogenic gold, Sulfur, Yilgarn",
    author = "Crystal LaFlamme and Jamieson, {John W.} and Fiorentini, {Marco L.} and Nicolas Th{\'e}baud and Stefano Caruso and Vikraman Selvaraja",
    year = "2018",
    month = "6",
    day = "1",
    doi = "10.1016/j.gr.2018.02.005",
    language = "English",
    volume = "58",
    pages = "27--38",
    journal = "Gondwana Research",
    issn = "1342-937X",
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    }

    TY - JOUR

    T1 - Investigating sulfur pathways through the lithosphere by tracing mass independent fractionation of sulfur to the Lady Bountiful orogenic gold deposit, Yilgarn Craton

    AU - LaFlamme, Crystal

    AU - Jamieson, John W.

    AU - Fiorentini, Marco L.

    AU - Thébaud, Nicolas

    AU - Caruso, Stefano

    AU - Selvaraja, Vikraman

    PY - 2018/6/1

    Y1 - 2018/6/1

    N2 - As sulfur is the primary complexing ligand for gold transport in aqueous fluids, recent work has demonstrated that the Archean systems can preserve mass independent fractionation of sulfur (MIF-S) to yield near-zero values (Δ33S1 = 0 ± 0.5‰). In such cases, interpretation of the geological significance of such isotopic signatures may be compromised as it is known that mass dependent fractionation of sulfur (MDF-S) can yield small Δ33S values (herein as Δ33SB) often owing to geobiological reactions involving sulfur. In this study, we reassess the range of possible values of Δ33SB from the traditionally accepted value of 0 ± 0.2‰, to demonstrate that this range is not constant but rather directly linked to the degree of δ34S fractionation. We present a multiple sulfur isotope dataset from the Neoarchean Lady Bountiful orogenic gold deposit from the Yilgarn Craton, Western Australia. This deposit contains pyrite with an isotopic composition of δ34S = ~+2.1 ± 0.8‰ and Δ33S = +0.14 ± 0.06‰ (2SD on the mean). The analysis of these results, as well as of a data compilation from other ~2.65 Ga orogenic gold deposits of the Yilgarn Craton, indicates that Δ33S1 values are too large to be the result of purely MDF-S processes. In addition, when compared to a compilation of >3400 Δ33S0 measurements of Archean sedimentary rocks, which shows highly variable positive and negative signals, the remarkably constant positive MIF-S1 signature of gold deposits from the Yilgarn Craton, with Δ33S1 values between 0 and +0.6‰, is evidence that the source of the auriferous fluids equilibrated at depth by mixing with a non MIF-S0-bearing sulfur reservoir. By enhancing the application of MIF-S1 (Δ33S1) as a powerful and indelible tracer to understand the source and emplacement pathways of gold-bearing fluids through the lithosphere, the outcomes from this study demonstrate the recorded +Δ33S1 signature in the auriferous fluids reflects the presence of sulfur that was at least partially sourced from an Archean sediment reservoir.

    AB - As sulfur is the primary complexing ligand for gold transport in aqueous fluids, recent work has demonstrated that the Archean systems can preserve mass independent fractionation of sulfur (MIF-S) to yield near-zero values (Δ33S1 = 0 ± 0.5‰). In such cases, interpretation of the geological significance of such isotopic signatures may be compromised as it is known that mass dependent fractionation of sulfur (MDF-S) can yield small Δ33S values (herein as Δ33SB) often owing to geobiological reactions involving sulfur. In this study, we reassess the range of possible values of Δ33SB from the traditionally accepted value of 0 ± 0.2‰, to demonstrate that this range is not constant but rather directly linked to the degree of δ34S fractionation. We present a multiple sulfur isotope dataset from the Neoarchean Lady Bountiful orogenic gold deposit from the Yilgarn Craton, Western Australia. This deposit contains pyrite with an isotopic composition of δ34S = ~+2.1 ± 0.8‰ and Δ33S = +0.14 ± 0.06‰ (2SD on the mean). The analysis of these results, as well as of a data compilation from other ~2.65 Ga orogenic gold deposits of the Yilgarn Craton, indicates that Δ33S1 values are too large to be the result of purely MDF-S processes. In addition, when compared to a compilation of >3400 Δ33S0 measurements of Archean sedimentary rocks, which shows highly variable positive and negative signals, the remarkably constant positive MIF-S1 signature of gold deposits from the Yilgarn Craton, with Δ33S1 values between 0 and +0.6‰, is evidence that the source of the auriferous fluids equilibrated at depth by mixing with a non MIF-S0-bearing sulfur reservoir. By enhancing the application of MIF-S1 (Δ33S1) as a powerful and indelible tracer to understand the source and emplacement pathways of gold-bearing fluids through the lithosphere, the outcomes from this study demonstrate the recorded +Δ33S1 signature in the auriferous fluids reflects the presence of sulfur that was at least partially sourced from an Archean sediment reservoir.

    KW - MIF-S

    KW - Orogenic gold

    KW - Sulfur

    KW - Yilgarn

    UR - http://www.scopus.com/inward/record.url?scp=85042747689&partnerID=8YFLogxK

    U2 - 10.1016/j.gr.2018.02.005

    DO - 10.1016/j.gr.2018.02.005

    M3 - Review article

    VL - 58

    SP - 27

    EP - 38

    JO - Gondwana Research

    JF - Gondwana Research

    SN - 1342-937X

    ER -