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Pechenga

Russia

Main commodities: Ni Cu
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The Pechanga nickel-copper deposits, (with associated cobalt, platinum and palladium) are located on the Kola Peninsula of north-western Russia.

The Pechanga district (or Pechenga Greenstone Belt) lies within the larger, 1000 km long Palaeoproterozoic North Transfennoscandian greenstone belt dated at 2.0 to 1.97 Ma located between blocks of Archaean crust. It contains numerous massive and disseminated Ni-Cu sulphide ore deposits hosted within differentiated sills with composition grading upwards from wehrilte through pyroxenite to gabbro (i.e., gabbro-wehrlite association), with less common non-differentiated ultramafic or gabbro intrusions. Ni-bearing gabbro-wehrlite intrusions are hosted by shales, sandstones and tuffs of the Pilgujarvi formation, with the immediate enclosing rocks to the mineralised intrusives beling peridotites, serpentinite and black schist (meta-tuffs). Sedimentary rocks of the Pilgujarvi formation contain abundant authigenic sulphides, found as disseminated pyrite grains, less commonly concretions and massive or laminated sulphide beds. Ferropicritic volcanics, which are also present within the Pilgujarvi formation and in parts of the overlying mafic volcanic suite, are co-magmatic with the Ni-bearing intrusions.

The ores are principally magmatic sulphide accumulations of pentlandite, pyrrhotite and chalcopyrite occurring as discordant disseminated to net-vein to stringer mineralisation and stratabound massive sulphide lenses in the basal sections of mafic to ultramafic intrusions and flows which have been serpentinised.

Five styles of sulphide occurrence have been recognised, namely i) disseminated sulphides, occurring as both interstitial and globular forms toward the base of the host ultramafic to mafic bodies, within olivine cumulate portions of a ferropicrites phase; ii) massive sulphides found at the lower contact between the ferropicrites of the ultramafic to mafic hosts and the underlying sedimentary rocks; iii) breccia-matrix sulphides, extending for up to a kilometre along strike at the basal contact of the ultramafic to mafic hosts and extending into the sediments - this style comprises a matrix of sulphides exhibiting a tectonic flow fabric, containing fragments of ultramafic and sedimentary rocks; iv) vein or stringer sulphides that are chalcopyrite rich and are predominantly found in the underlying sediments (graphitic pyrite-rich sedimentary rocks, locally known as "black schists"); iv) ore-bearing flows, within the black schists, occurring as pyrite-rich layers, concretions and lenses.

The overall size of the deposits has been estimated at 150 Mt @1% Ni
Reserves in 2000 were approximately:   30 Mt @ 2% Ni, 1% Cu, 0.04% Co
Production + Resources in 2000:   4.7 Mt of contained Ni, 3.5 Mt of contained Cu at grades of 1.2% Ni, 0.9% Cu.
Annual production in the early 1990's was around 35 000 tonnes of Ni per annum.

According to Abzalov (2009), total reserves of the district are estimated as 339 Mt @ an average grade of 1.18% Ni and 0.63% Cu

The most recent source geological information used to prepare this summary was dated: 2001.    
This description is a summary from published sources, the chief of which are listed below.
© Copyright Porter GeoConsultancy Pty Ltd.   Unauthorised copying, reproduction, storage or dissemination prohibited.


  References & Additional Information
   Selected References:
Barnes S-J, Melezhik V A and Sokolov S V  2001 - The composition and mode of formation of the Pechenga nickel deposits, Kola Peninsula, Northwestern Russia: in    The Canadian Mineralogist   v39 pp 447-471
Begg, G.C., Hronsky, J.A.M., Arndt, N.T., Griffin, W.L., O Reilly, S.Y. and Hayward, N.,  2010 - Lithospheric, Cratonic, and Geodynamic Setting of Ni-Cu-PGE Sulfide Deposits: in    Econ. Geol.   v.105, pp. 1057-1070.
Green A H, Melezhik V A  1999 - Geology of the Pechenga Ore Deposits - A Review with Comments on Ore Forming Processes: in Keays R R, Lesher C M, Lightfoot P C, Farrow C E G, (Eds),  Dynamic Processes in Magmatic Ore Deposits and their Application in Mineral Exploration Geological Association of Canada, Short Course Notes   v13 pp 287-328
Kravtsova O A, Maximov V I, Sokolov S V  2002 - Distribution of platinum-group elements in Pechenga Cu-Ni sulphide ores and concentrates: in    Trans. IMM (incorp. AusIMM Proc.), Section B, Appl. Earth Sc.   v111 pp B128-B132
Naldrett A J,  2004 - Deposits of the Pechenga Area, Russia: in Naldrett A J, 2004 Magmatic Sulfide Deposits: Geology, Geochemistry and Exploration, Springer, Heidelberg,    pp 279-306
Skuf in P K and Theart H J F,  2005 - Geochemical and tectono-magmatic evolution of the volcano-sedimentary rocks of Pechenga and other greenstone fragments within the Kola Greenstone Belt, Russia: in    Precambrian Research   v141 pp 1-48
Song, X., Wang, Y. and Chen, L.,  2011 - Magmatic Ni-Cu-(PGE) deposits in magma plumbing systems: Features, formation and exploration: in    Geoscience Frontiers   v.2, pp. 375-384.


Porter GeoConsultancy Pty Ltd (PorterGeo) provides access to this database at no charge.   It is largely based on scientific papers and reports in the public domain, and was current when the sources consulted were published.   While PorterGeo endeavour to ensure the information was accurate at the time of compilation and subsequent updating, PorterGeo takes no responsibility what-so-ever for inaccurate or out of date data, information or interpretations.

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