The Tanami deep seismic reflection experiment: An insight into gold mineralization and Paleoproterozoic collision in the North Australian Craton

Bruce Goleby, David Huston, Patrick Lyons, Leon Vandenberg, Leon Bagas, Brett Davies, Leonie Jones, Musie Gebre-Mariam, Wade Johnson, Tim Smith, Luc English

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

37 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Imaging of a major collision zone between the Tanami region and Aileron Province of the Arunta Orogen in Northern Australia, and recognition that several of the major gold deposits within the Tanami region are within near-surface antiformal stacks or uplifted and exhumed crustal sections associated with major crustal-penetrating shear zones, are fundamental results from the 2005 Tanami Seismic Collaborative Research Project. The suture, which is interpreted to have resulted from collision, separates the northwest-dipping structural grain of the Aileron Province crust in the south from the southeast-dipping structural grain of the Tanami crust in the northwest. The collision between the Tanami region and the Aileron Province is interpreted to have occurred prior to ca. 1840 Ma. The correlation between the surface extension of crustal-penetrating shear zones that extend to the Moho boundary and the locations of known gold-rich mineral fields is significant and has implications for minerals explorers within the Tanami region, and elsewhere. In the near-surface, where the crustal-penetrating structures cut relatively shallow upper crustal Tanami Group rocks, there is a significant increase in the degree of local deformation and results in through-going thrust faults, associated pop-up structures, ramp anticlines and antiformal stacking. All known ore deposits appear to be located within these more complexly deformed zones and therefore have a direct association with larger-scale structures.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)169-182
JournalTectonophysics
Volume472
Issue number1-4
Publication statusPublished - 2009

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