This project comprises research on porphyry molybdenum systems that will lead to new exploration models at scales from the deposit to regional. The first stage of the research focuses on developing a mineralogical, trace element, and alteration zoning pattern for the Adanac molybdenum deposit. This will allow us to better understand how these patterns can be utilized in exploration both within the Adanac area and for other similar deposits, as well as provide important constraints on fluid flow within and peripheral to the deposit.
Second-stage research will focus on examining the origin of the plutonic suite responsible for mineralization (Surprise Lake Batholith, which is a large, composite, highly-evolved granitic pluton surrounded by polymetallic mineralization) and comparison of that suite to other Mo ± Sn ± W ± Au ± Cu deposits. Of particular interest is the potential linkage between porphyry Mo and intrusion hosted Au deposits. This linkage will be tested by examining the isotopic signature (Re-Os) of the molybdenum deposit and comparison to the isotopic signature of nearby placer Au deposits which may have originated geologically above the molybdenum mineralization. Obtaining evidence for or against this geochemical link will be extremely important in helping to focus exploration for both types of deposit at several scales. Finally, these comparisons will add considerably to our understanding of tectonics and metallogeny of western Canada.