A stream sediment pilot study was conducted over copper-nickel mineralization in the Duluth Complex. The purpose of this study was to determine which sample media (clastic sediments, organic bank sediments or Fe-Mn oxide precipitates) best reflected copper-nickel mineralization and to determine which size fraction and extraction methods, prior to atomic absorption analysis, yielded maximum contrast between background and mineralization.
The results of this study indicate that organic stream bank sediments are more prevalent than clastic sediments and Fe-Mn oxides - they yield a multi-element anomaly as opposed to generally a bi-element anomaly for clastic sediments and Fe-Mn oxides - and appear to be less affected by drastic variations in the stream water chemistry than clastic sediments.
All three sample medias reflect the mineralization both directly over and downstream from mineralization using partial extraction techniques. The downstream dispersion provides a larger target which enables a lower sample density for reconnaissance exploration. For the partial extraction methods tested, ammonium citrate/hydrogen peroxide method on the -80 mesh fraction gave maximum contrast for both the clastic and organic sediments, and ammonium citrate/hydroxylamine hydrochloride for the Fe-Mn oxides.
Report 109: Pilot Study on Stream Sediment Exploration Geochemistry, Filson Creek, Lake County, Minnesota; T62N R10W-11W.
(38 pages, 8.5 x 11 inches, 1.15 MB)
Authors: D.G. Meineke, M.K. Vadis, and A.W. Klaysmat
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