Geology of volcanogenic massive sulfide deposit near Meli, northwestern Tigray, northern Ethiopia

  • S Abraham
  • B Konka
  • S Gebreselassie


Results of a preliminary study conducted on the volcanogenic massive sulfide (VMS) deposit near Meli/Rahwa, northern Ethiopia are presented in the paper. The study area forms part of Neoproterozoic basement of northern Ethiopia and southern part of the Arabian Nubian Shield (ANS). Selected surface rock samples of different lithologies and core samples from five boreholes were analyzed for petrography and geochemistry. The area consists of matabasalt, meta-andesite and meta-rhyolite, meta-volcaniclastics, phyllite and post-tectonic granite. The rocks have experienced low grade metamorphic conditions. Base metal mineralization, VMS- type, is present and consists of pyrite, chalcopyrite, sphalerite and galena. Chloritization is the dominant alteration among others, and the ore body is associated with mafic to intermediate metavolcanic and metavolcaniclastic rocks and follows the same trend with the host rocks, striking north-south with subvertical dips. The mineralization is about 50-70m long, 15-20m thick and rich in copper and zinc (above 5%) and Au as a byproduct which is in minable amount in the VMS-related gossan. The deposit is related to bimodal volcanic condition and is produced in an island arc tectonic setting.

Keywords: VMS, Base metals, Auriferous gossan, Meli/Rahwa, Tigray, Northern Ethiopia.


Journal Identifiers

eISSN: 2220-184X
print ISSN: 2073-073X