The Gumushane area near Artvin is highly characteristic due to a significant hydrothermal alteration zone genetically associated with a microdiorite stock and its late-stage derivatives in the form of porphyry plugs that intruded into all the pre-Middle Eocene lithologies. The porphyry intrusion is multi-stage, intermediate to felsic in composition, and divided into preore feldspar porphyries and quartz feldspar porphyries, syn-ore feldspar-amphibole porphyries, and post-ore feldspar porphyries. Sericitic alteration is dominant, but K-silicate alteration is also observed and is characterised mainly by secondary feldspars, biotites, quartz, anhydrite, magnetite and pyrite veinlets. The central part of the alteration and the porphyry system where syn-ore feldspar-amphibole porphyry outcrops coincides with intense quartz stock-working with anomalous but uneconomical Cu and Au values. In this zone, pyrite is ubiquitous and is accompanied by chalcopyrite and lesser sphalerite, sulphosalts, molybdenite, bornite and magnetite. Chemical analyses of surface and drill core samples show that overall Au and Cu values are around 0.5ppm and 0.3%, respectively, and that they are in the ranges of 1-2 ppm and 0.3-0.4%, respectively, in the densest stock-work zones.
Multi-phase intrusion of porphyries into Late Cretaceous limestone also caused replacement fronts along re-crystallised limestone and porphyry contacts. This type of mineralisation is enriched in Mn, Zn, Cu, Au and Ba, and contains on average 4.7% MnO, 3.2% FeO, 3.1 % Zn, 0.95% Cu, 0.3% Bb, 200 ppb Au, 900 ppm Bi and 660 ppm Ba, present in Fe- and Mn-oxides, pyrite, chalcopyrite, sphalerite and lesser bornite, sulphosalts and gold. Supergene oxidation is well developed in these zones.
Hydrothermal alteration mass change calculations reflect an intimate relationship between the two types of mineralisation. The lithologies near mineralised fronts are highly depleted in MnO and Zn, and the intensity of depletion is reduced away from the contact into the porphyry. The leached elements are added to the re-crystallised limestone block in which MnO and Zn show an 81-fold and 472-fold increase, respectively, over the least altered limestone. Au and Cu are enriched along the contact both in the porphyry and in the limestone, implying that they may have been derived either from other lithologies in the vicinity or the magma itself. (C) 2003 Elsevier GmbH. All rights reserved.