An AMF-PGC International Study Tour
Developed & Managed by Porter GeoConsultancy
Cordillera '98
Porphyry Related Copper & Gold Deposits in the Cordillera of the Americas
16 March to 8 April 1998 - In Two Separate Modules
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South American Module Tour Group
TOUR SUMMARY

The tour allowed a comparison of the different styles of porphyry occurrence - The deposits of the Cordillera range from early Jurassic to late Tertiary in age, and are hosted by rocks varying from quartz-sericite schists, to dolerites. They are associated with both localised acid or intermediate porphyritic plugs and dykes, to apophyses and zoned cores of extensive batholiths, and with intrusives with both calc-alkalic and alkalic compositions. Some are fracture controlled stockworks, groups of large veins, disseminated masses, breccia pipes, and/or skarns, others are high sulphidation high level deposits, while others are low sulphidation orebodies. Others again comprise vast high grade supergene blankets overlying sub-economic hypogene mineralisation, while some are developed as oxide orebodies.

Fifteen of the classic deposits in four countries and on two continents - On a historic basis, many of the classic, widely known porphyry deposits of the world have been concentrated within the Cordillera of North and South America, where the bulk of experience and knowledge is still centred. This tour visited 15 of the largest deposits in the Cordillera, taking in as broad a range of the different styles and ages of mineralisation, as well as covering some of the different mining methods. The emphasis of the tour was principally geological, although attention was also devoted to the mining, metallurgy and economics of the operations visited. Participants could take either or both of the two modules. The deposits visited were:

SOUTH AMERICAN MODULE - 11 days, from 16 March, 1998
  • Chuquicamata, Chile
  • Escondida, Chile
  • Los Bronces-Disputada, Chile,
  • El Indio, Chile
  • El Abra, Chile
  • El Teniente, Chile
  • Alumbrera, Argentina
NORTH AMERICAN MODULE - 10 days, from 30 March, 1998
  • San Manuel, Arizona, USA
  • Ray, Arizona, USA
  • Sierrita, Arizona, USA
  • Silver Bell, Arizona, USA
  • Bingham Canyon, Utah, USA
  • Highland Valley, BC, Canada
  • Afton/Ajax, BC, Canada
  • Mission, Arizona, USA
Seminars, workshops and expert guides - In addition to the mine tours, there were three seminars or workshops, one in Santiago to which attracted a wide cross section of the Chilean geoscience community, another to be run by Professor Spencer Titley in Tucson, and a third by Professor John Thompson at the University of BC in Vancouver. These seminars and workshops are designed to provide an overview of the regional tectonic, geological and metallogenic setting of the regions and deposits visited.

During the Chilean leg of the tour, we were accompanied by either Sergio Barassi or Colin Brooks, experienced and well known Chilean based geologists, each with more than 25 years working on the porphyries and the Cordillera. Sergio, a Chilean has excellent english and Colin an Australian has good Spanish, translating where necessary, giving background commentary and answering questions. In Arizona, Professor Spencer Titley, provided technical leadership on the tour.

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For more information contact:   T M (Mike) Porter, of Porter GeoConsultancy   (mike.porter@portergeo.com.au)

This tour was designed, developed, organised, managed and escorted by
T M (Mike) Porter of Porter GeoConsultancy Pty Ltd.

Porter GeoConsultancy Pty Ltd
6 Beatty Street
LINDEN PARK, 5065
South Australia
Telephone: +61 8 8379 7397
Mobile: +61 422 791 776


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