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Ore Texture, Mineralogy and Whole Rock Geochemistry of the Iron Mineralization from Edea North Area, Nyong Complex, Southern Cameroon: Implication for Origin and Enrichment Process

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DOI: 10.4236/ijg.2017.85036    1,598 Downloads   2,360 Views

ABSTRACT

This study presents the ore texture, mineralogy and whole rock geochemistry of iron occurrence from the Edea North area located at the upper limit of the Nyong Unit, part of the Congo craton. This iron mineralization is of magnetite quartzite type enclosed by metamorphic rocks of the granulite facies. Two main facies have been identified over the study area including the banded and the massive facies. The mineralogical set of these facies is in majority represented by magnetite, quartz and pyroxene martite in addition to minor biotite, apatite, and amphibole. Magnetite presents as irregular and elongated minerals which can contain quartz inclusions of various shapes and sizes, as blasts clustering, around pyroxenes and isolated xenomorphic magnetite minerals in the silicate phases. Quartz varies from fine to coarse-grained and ribbon quartz. This indicates re-crystallization and deformation during metamorphism. Electron microprobe analysis on magnetite and martite show Fe2O3 contents that vary between 96.11 and 99.76. Whole rock chemical data showed that Fe-contents are as high as 62.9 wt%. The SiO2 content varies between 33.8 wt% and 51.2 wt%. Iron oxides and SiO2 are negatively correlated. Moreover, the low positive correlations between Al2O3 and HFSE, and LILE suggest a contribution of clastic materials in the protolith of studied materials. The samples show low contents of V, Cr, Ba, Zr with respect to igneous rocks. This may infer a sedimentary origin for the studied rocks; furthermore, these materials may have undergone hydrothermal alteration. The REE patterns reveal enrichment in LREE compared to HREE. Some samples show positive Eu (1.82) and other negative anomalies Eu (0.54 to 0.97). The lack of Ce anomalies suggests that the depositional environment of the Edea North iron occurrence was anoxic or suboxic. Overall, the Edea North iron occurrence may have undergone significant input from hydrothermal sources with imprints of the clastic during its deposition.

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Bonda, B. , Etame, J. , Kouske, A. , Bayiga, E. , Ngon, G. , Mbaï, S. and Gérard, M. (2017) Ore Texture, Mineralogy and Whole Rock Geochemistry of the Iron Mineralization from Edea North Area, Nyong Complex, Southern Cameroon: Implication for Origin and Enrichment Process. International Journal of Geosciences, 8, 659-677. doi: 10.4236/ijg.2017.85036.

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