Circulation de saumures à la discordance socle / couverture sédimentaire et formation des concentrations uranifères protérozoïques (Bassin de l'Athabasca, Canada)

Abstract : Fluid circulations between crystalline basements and their sedimentary covers are major events for element transfer in the crust. In numerous settings, basinal fluids penetrate the low-permeability basement, interact with basement lithologies, leach metals, leading to metal concentrations, notably Pb, Zn, Cu, Ag and U. Unconformity-related uranium deposits from the Proterozoic Athabasca Basin (Canada) are crucial witnesses and useful tools for the understanding of mechanisms and consequences of such fluid events. Fluid inclusions allow us to directly sample and analyze paleofluids. Despite analytical difficulties, these micrometer size objects provide key information on fluid properties. Available analytical techniques (microthermometry, LA-ICP-MS, crush-leach, in-vacuo crushing) provide reconstruction of temperature, pressure, detailed fluid chemistry, including metal concentrations, as well as isotopic composition of water hydrogen, chlorine and of dissolved CO2 carbon. In addition, analysis of isotopic composition of oxygen and carbon from minerals in which fluid inclusions are trapped provide supplementary information on fluid temperatures and fluid-rock interactions. This approach was used on six uranium deposits from the Athabasca Basin and provided the following results, which can be potentially generalized to the entire basin. (1) Two brines, a calcium-rich brine and a sodium-rich brine have circulated and mixed at the base of the basin and in the basement at the time of formation of uranium deposits, at temperature close to 150 ± 30°C. (2) Both brines have transported uranium, whose exceptional and highly heterogeneous concentrations (0.2 to 600 ppm) indicate that it was leached in the basement. (3) Both brines share a common origin and were formed mainly by surface evaporation of seawater and mixing with fluids originating from dissolution of evaporitic minerals. (4) The calcium-rich brine was formed by interaction between the sodium-rich brine and basement lithologies. (5) Interaction with basement minerals and graphite, water radiolysis, and bitumen synthesis were the main controls on the oxygen, hydrogen and carbon isotopic composition of brines.
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Antonin Richard. Circulation de saumures à la discordance socle / couverture sédimentaire et formation des concentrations uranifères protérozoïques (Bassin de l'Athabasca, Canada). Autre. Institut National Polytechnique de Lorraine, 2009. Français. ⟨NNT : 2009INPL092N⟩. ⟨tel-01749588⟩

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