Northern Mozambique hosts numerous occurrences of gold mineralization in metamorphic terranes, which are little known because of the insufficient studies. In this work, we describe the main geological and geochemical characteristics of the Nanlia and Makorongo gold prospects located in the Namuno district, northeastern Mozambique. We report the mode of occurrence of gold, petrography and mineralogy of the host rocks and ores, fluid inclusion characteristics and stable isotope data, to understand the genesis of gold mineralization in the study area. The gold mineralization in the Nanlia and Makorongo prospects is hosted by the Neoproterozoic Xixano Metamorphic Complex in the Mozambique Belt, which is composed of mafic granulite, amphibolite, paragneiss and marble. The host rock amphibolite consists mainly of amphibole, plagioclase, biotite and minor quartz, titanite and sulfides. The gold mineralization is associated with E-W to ENE-WSW trending quartz veins, oriented parallel to low angle to the foliation of the host rock amphibolite. The ore mineralogy consists of pyrite, pyrrhotite, chalcopyrite, magnetite, galena and sphalerite, with minor tellurides, xilingolite, electrum and native gold. Mineralized quartz veins in the Nanlia and Makorongo prospects host two types of fluid inclusions which locally coexist in the same assemblage: type 1, one-phase CO2 inclusions with final melting temperature between −58 and −52 °C; and type 2, two-phase H2O + NaCl (±CO2 ± N2 ± CH4) inclusions with homogenization temperature ranging from 246 to 370 °C and 239 to 382 °C in the Nanlia and Makorongo prospects, respectively, and salinity of 12–21 wt% NaCl eq. Pressure and temperature (P-T) conditions of ore-formation were estimated from fluid inclusions and sphalerite geobarometry at 420–620 °C and 160–280 MPa, and 330–440 °C and 150–200 MPa in the Nanlia and Makorongo prospects, respectively. The Nanlia and Makorongo gold prospects are classified as orogenic-type gold deposits. We suggest that gold mineralization was caused by an aqueous-carbonic fluid with low-moderate salinity originated by devolatilization during prograde metamorphism of underlying rocks. The gold mineralization post-dates the peak of metamorphism of the host rocks, thus formed during the retrograde metamorphism of the host rocks. The precipitation of gold in the Nanlia and Makorongo prospects was caused by fluid phase separation induced by pressure drop as the mineralizing fluid migrated to shallower depths.
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- Geochemistry and Petrology
- Economic Geology