Geological and Environmental Engineering | Article | Published 2021-01-28
Porphyry Cu–Au ores areamong the important types of porphyry deposits. Some of these are enriched in Pd and Pt, which in some cases have economic potential for PGE (platinum group element) recovery. The behaviour of PGE and S-saturation in mafic intrusions associated with porphyry deposits are, however, poorly constrained. Here we investigate the PGE concentrations of gabbroic intrusions from Akcha, Beleuti, and Kalmakyr in the Almalyk porphyry Cu–Au ore field in Uzbekistan through Ni–S analyses employing fire assay-isotope dilution method. The results reveal extremely high Pd/Ir ratio and a negative Ru anomaly for the Beleuti and Akcha gabbro which we attribute to fractional crystallization of olivine and Ru–Os–Ir alloys. The extremely high Cu/Pd ratio (2.56 × 105–2.98 × 106) and depleted PGE contents of the Kalmakyr gabbro possibly represent immiscible separation of sulphide. During the emplacement of the parental magma of Kalmakyr gabbro, crustal contamination might have resulted in S-saturation and sulphide segregation. Sulphide-bearing crust was remobilized during the increasing maturity of the island and long-lived arc magmatism, which released the sulphide into the hydrothermal system of the porphyry deposit. We propose that this process favoured the enrichment of Pt–Pd and sulphide in the Kalmakyr porphyry Cu–Au deposit.