Publications Repository - Helmholtz-Zentrum Dresden-Rossendorf

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The inherent link between ore formation and geometallurgy as documented by complex tin mineralization at the Hämmerlein deposit (Erzgebirge, Germany)
Kern, M.; Kästner, J.; Tolosana-Delgado, R.; Jeske, T.; Gutzmer, J.;
A comprehensive quantitative mineralogical study on the Hämmerlein tin deposit in the Erzgebirge, Germany, not only yields insights into the genesis of Sn mineralization but also provides also important clues for beneficiation. The lithological units of the skarn and greisen deposit show significant differences in modal mineralogy and Sn deportment. These systematic differences are attributed to several stages of ore formation. Of greatest significance is a paragenetically late cassiterite-chlorite-fluorite-sulfide assemblage. This assemblage replaces pre-existing skarn lithologies and also forms stockwork mineralization in greisen-type ores developed at the expense of mica schist that surrounds the skarn. The co-genetic formation of the cassiterite-chlorite-fluorite-sulfide assemblage is captured by the mineral association parameter—a parameter that can be easily quantified from data acquired during automated mineralogy studies. To document the preferred mineral association, a ratio is introduced that illustrates how closely cassiterite—the only Sn mineral of economic relevance—is associated with chlorite, fluorite, and sulfides. This socalled MAMA ratio illustrates the strongly preferred association between cassiterite and chlorite. The results also illustrate that the abundance of rock-forming chlorite may be used as a proxy for the abundance of the much less common cassiterite. This proxy is well-suited to sort ore from poorly mineralized/unmineralized rock fragments early during the beneficiation process. Such separation may well be achieved by using a short wave infrared detector that is already deployed in commercially available sorting equipment. The case study illustrates the inherent link between the processes responsible for ore genesis, the definition of geometallurgical domains, and the selection of suitable beneficiation strategies.

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  • Secondary publication expected from 21.08.2019

Publ.-Id: 28351 - Permalink