Controls on Tungsten Fertility at Cantung: Does Tungsten Mineralization Require a Specific Melt Protolith and/or Mantle Input?



Vanessa Elongo –



V. Elongo – University of Alberta, Edmonton, AB, Canada
P. Lecumberri-Sanchez – University of Alberta, Edmonton, AB, Canada
H. Legros – University of Alberta, Edmonton, AB, Canada
H. Falck – Northwest Territories Geological Survey, Yellowknife, NT, Canada
E. Adlakha – Saint Mary’s University, Halifax, NS, Canada



The Tombstone-Tungsten Belt (TTB) in the Canadian Cordillera is host to large tungsten deposits. The Cantung skarn deposit is one of the highest grade tungsten deposits in the TTB and is hosted in carbonate units surrounded by argillites. The tungsten-bearing mineral at Cantung is scheelite (CaWO4). Cantung is spatially associated with the Tungsten plutonic suite of the TTB, which consist of mid-Cretaceous felsic plutons, with local mafic (lamprophyre) dykes.

While there is a broad agreement on the relationship between tungsten mineralization and crustal-derived felsic magmas, a potential input of mantle-derived mafic magmas and/or a pre-enriched protolith has been proposed for the Cantung deposit. Mantle-derived fluids are known to be involved in the genesis of many other high grade tungsten deposits.

The aim of this study is to determine what are the likely sources of mineralizing fluids and if any particular crustal or mantle material contributed mainly to the mineralizing hydrothermal fluids at Cantung. The Sr and Nd isotope signatures of scheelite was determined and compared to the ones of the local rocks representing local reservoirs and potential sources for this purpose.

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