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Skarn Deposits in the Circum-Pacific Belts


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Author Yiming Z


The Circum-Pacific area is one of the most important gigantic skarn-metallogenic belts in the world. In more than 20 coastwise countries of this region, there exist thousands skarn deposits of different types. According to the differences of major metallic elements, the skarn deposits may be classified into seven subtypes, i.e. Fe, Cu, Pb-Zn, W, Sn, Mo and Au skarn deposits. In this paper, the distribution. and geological characteristics of above-mentioned types of skarn deposits are described briefly. Skarn deposits may also be classified on the basis of the dominant calc(magnesian)-silicate mineral assemblages into four types: magnesian, calcic, manganoan, and alkaline skarn types. Magnesian skarns may be associated with Fe, Cu, Au,, Sn, B, Be mineralization, calcic skarns with Fe, Cu, W, Mo, An, Be, Pb, Zn, Sn minerailization, while the alkaline skarns occur in U(Th, Nb) deposits. The skarn deposits of both East and West Pacific rims have many general characters, but have some diferences in geotectonic settings, intensities of mineralization, distribution, and metallogenic epoches. In this paper, the minerogenetic series and the mineralizing specialities of related magmatic rocks of the skarn deposits are also discussed.