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> Forsiden > Publikationer > Geology of Greenland Survey Bulletin > Vol. 191 Geol. Greenl. Surv. Bull. > Review of Greenland Activities 2001, pp 57-66

GEOLOGY OF GREENLAND SURVEY BULLETIN 191

 
Kimberlites and other ultramafic alkaline rocks in the Sisimiut…Kangerlussuaq region, southern West Greenland

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The alkaline province of southern West Greenland
includes swarms of dykes described as kimberlites and
lamproites (Larsen 1991), and these rock types are
widely distributed in the Sisimiut­Sarfartoq­Kanger-
lussuaq region (Figs 1, 2). Kimberlites and lamproites
are potential carriers of diamond, and since the descrip-
tion of the Sarfartoq carbonatite complex and the kim-
berlitic dykes related to this complex (Larsen 1980;
Secher & Larsen 1980), the Sisimiut­Sarfartoq­Kanger-
lussuaq region has seen several campaigns of com-
mercial diamond exploration. The latest and most
persistent stage of exploration began in the mid-1990s
and has continued to date, with varying intensity.
Numerous reports of diamond-favourable indicator min-
erals from till sampling, finds of kimberlitic dykes, and
recovery of actual diamonds from kimberlitic rocks
have emerged since 1995 (Olsen et al. 1999). A drilling
programme in late 2001 confirmed the unusually great
length and width of a magnetic kimberlitic dyke
(Ferguson 2001).
The alkaline ultramafic dykes within the Sisimiut­
Kangerlussuaq and Sarfartoq regions intrude the bor-
der zone between the Archaean craton and the Palaeo-
proterozoic Nagssugtoqidian orogen (van Gool et al.
2002, this volume). This border is defined as the south-
ern boundary of Palaeoproterozoic reworking of the
Archaean basement gneisses. The reworking has affected
the Palaeoproterozoic Kangâmiut dolerite dykes, which
57
Kimberlites and other ultramafic alkaline rocks in the
Sisimiut­Kangerlussuaq region, southern West Greenland
Sven Monrad Jensen, Henriette Hansen, Karsten Secher, Agnete Steenfelt, Frands Schjøth and
Thorkild M. Rasmussen
Archaean
Palaeoproterozoic
Undifferentiated
Arfersiorfik quartz diorite
Sisimiut charnockite
Syntectonic granite suite
Archaean gneiss (s.l.)
Supracrustal rocks
Mafic dykes
Early Archaean gneiss
Kangâmiut dyke swarm
Thrust
High strain zone
Ikertooq
Sisimiut
Nordre
Isortoq
Sukkertoppen
Iskappe
Inland
Ice
Itilleq
Kangaamiut
Maniitsoq
Nordre
Strømfjord
Ikertooq
steep belt
52
°
54
°
50 km
Sønd
re S
trø m
fjor
d
67
°
67
°
66
°
Greenland
Fig. 1. Geological map of the region with
the project area (Fig. 2) outlined in a red
frame. Modified from Mengel et al. (1998).
Geology of Greenland Survey Bulletin 191, 57­66 (2002) © GEUS, 2002
GSB191-Indhold 13/12/02 11:30 Side 57
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were intruded into the Archaean gneisses prior to defor-
mation and are now highly strained and boudinaged
north of the boundary.
The intrusion of alkaline dykes appears to have taken
place during two events. Lamproite dykes in the Sisimiut
region are around 1.2 Ga old, whereas the Sarfartoq com-
plex (Fig. 2) and a swarm of associated kimberlitic
dykes have ages of around 0.6 Ga (Larsen & Rex 1992).
A precise spatial relationship between the two intrusive
events has not been established.
A project concerned with general scientific aspects
of kimberlitic and related rocks in the Sisimiut­
Kangerlussuaq region was established in 2000. The aim
is to gather knowledge from companies' exploration
activities and to incorporate Survey expertise such as
petrology, structural geology, isotope geology, geo-
chemistry, geophysics and the geographic information
system (GIS). Field work was carried out in 2000 and
2001, with the Kangerlussuaq International Science
Support (KISS) centre at Kangerlussuaq airport as logis-
tical base. A combination of daily reconnaissance cov-
ering large areas using a helicopter, and fly camps of
2­3 days duration was applied.
The broad term `kimberlitic' is used here in acknow-
ledgement of the fact that the classification of the ultra-
mafic dyke rocks of West Greenland is not resolved
with unanimity. Many of the dyke rocks resemble kim-
berlites and have previously been described as such
(Larsen 1980, 1991; Scott 1981; Larsen & Rex 1992).
Mitchell et al. (1999), however, take the view that the
dyke rocks are not `archetypal' kimberlites, but ultra-
mafic lamprophyres that should be termed melnoites
or aillikites. In the light of the actual occurrence of dia-
monds in the West Greenland dyke rocks, Mitchell et
al. (1999) consider them to represent one of the few
examples of diamond-bearing ultramafic lamprophyres.
One of the aims of the present project is to contribute
to a generally accepted classification of the West
Greenland kimberlitic and related rocks.
Distribution of kimberlitic and
related rocks
Larsen's (1991) compilation of Greenland's kimberlite,
lamproite and ultramafic lamprophyre occurrences
proved to be a valuable initial guide to companies when
the ongoing diamond exploration commenced in West
Greenland in the mid-1990s (Olsen et al. 1999). The com-
pilation includes data collected by earlier workers (e.g.
Scott 1981), who typically operated by boat and thus
were often restricted to working near the coast. As a
58
0
40 km
20
67
°
66
°
30´
53
°
52
°
51
°
50
°
·
·
Kangerlussuaq
Inland Ice
·
Sisimiut
Sarfartoq
Søn
dre
Strø
mfjo
rd
A
B
C
E
D
F
G
H
I
J
Itilleq
Fig. 2. Distribution of kimberlitic and lamprophyric occurrences within the project area. A­J are localities mentioned in the text. Red
triangles are kimberlitic and lamprophyric dykes known prior to the present study: lamproites predominate in the region between
Sisimiut and Itilleq, kimberlites in the Sarfartoq region (Larsen & Rex 1992). Green triangles are observations from the present study.
Heavy colouring represents in situ finds and light colouring represents boulders (float).
GSB191-Indhold 13/12/02 11:30 Side 58
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consequence, the known occurrences had an uneven
distribution, and some areas appeared to be without
occurrences.
Many of the occurrences of in situ dykes and boul-
ders (float) in the Sisimiut­Sarfartoq­Kangerlussuaq
region known at present are indicated in Fig. 2. The
approximately 600 occurrences include those from
Larsen's (1991) compilation and new localities added
by exploration companies and recent field work by the
Geological Survey of Denmark and Greenland (GEUS).
It should be noted that the map does not include a
large number of company localities that are at present
confidential because they lie within active exclusive
exploration licence areas. The map illustrates the con-
centration of occurrences in the vicinity of the Sarfartoq
carbonatite complex, which Larsen (1980) interpreted
as a swarm of kimberlitic cone-sheets centred on the
carbonatite.
Bedrock exposure is generally poor in the study
region, and dykes and sills of kimberlite, lamproite and
carbonatite can be difficult to trace because they are
thin, easily eroded and often covered by overburden
and vegetation. Therefore, both stream geochemical
data and aeromagnetic data are investigated with the
aim of identifying geochemical and geophysical signa-
tures reflecting occurrences of kimberlitic and related
dykes.
Field activities
Field work in 2000 consisted of one week's reconnais-
sance and visits to new dyke occurrences discovered
by exploration companies. The 2001 field work was
focused on the spatial distribution of kimberlitic dyke
rocks in areas with little or no previous information, and
detailed studies on mantle xenoliths from the kimber-
litic dykes. Studies of mantle xenolith-bearing rocks are
described in a separate section below. The field work
also included testing the ease of locating occurrences
described in companies' assessment reports using var-
ious Global Positioning System (GPS) equipment and
GIS methods.
Locality F (Fig. 2) provides an example of the den-
sity of new observations made in an area with no pre-
viously reported kimberlitic or lamproitic occurrences.
Within the framed area 26 kimberlitic boulders and one
new dyke were registered (Fig. 3). Three of the boul-
ders measure about 1
x 1 x 1 m in size, indicating that
the dyke or dykes from which they originated must be
of substantial dimensions. Several large boulders were
broken up into many smaller fragments, resulting in a
much higher count of individual pieces of kimberlitic
rock. The high number of kimberlitic boulders in this
small area suggests they may have been derived from
a nearby dyke outcrop. Similar observations were made
at localities G and H (Fig. 2).
Stream sediment geochemical
anomalies reflecting alkaline rocks
Geochemical reconnaissance-scale stream sediment sur-
veys have been carried out over large parts of West
Greenland, including the project region considered
here. The chemical analyses have been compiled and
59
Fig. 3. View of the area of locality F. A
small outcrop of a new kimberlitic dyke
(arrow) is located in the lineament
marked by dotted line. Length of dotted
line is approximately 200 m.
GSB191-Indhold 13/12/02 11:30 Side 59
background image
calibrated (Steenfelt 1999, 2001a), and presented in a
geochemical atlas of West and South Greenland (Steenfelt
2001b). The atlas displays element distribution patterns
for 43 major and trace elements based on analysis of
the < 0.1 mm grain size fraction of stream sediment sam-
ples collected systematically with a density of about
one sample per 30 km
2
. The atlas also includes maps
of high-pressure mineral phases of assumed mantle
derivation, so-called kimberlite indicator minerals, iden-
tified in the 0.1 to 1 mm fraction of stream sediment
samples collected between latitudes 61°N and 67°N.
The Sarfartoq carbonatite complex comprises rocks
enriched in P, Ba, Sr and rare-earth elements (REE),
and hosts a niobium-rich pyrochlore mineralisation
(Secher & Larsen 1980). In the geochemical maps, the
Sarfartoq complex is easily recognised as a local but very
pronounced anomaly with high concentrations of P,
Ba, Sr, Nb and REE, as well as Mo, Ta and Th.
Kimberlites and lamproites have olivine- and car-
bonate-rich groundmass (high Mg and Ca) and high
concentrations of the trace elements Ba, Cr, Ni, Nb, Sr,
P, Ti and light REE. In view of the particular minera-
logy and chemistry of the alkaline rocks, their presence
within the gneiss-dominated Archaean basement should
be readily detectable in the stream sediment geochemical
survey. However, because of the small volume of alka-
line rocks, their geochemical imprint on the stream sedi-
ment composition may be obscured by the presence
of other igneous rocks that have intruded the tonalitic
gneisses in the same region. Gabbroic inclusions within
the gneisses, and the Palaeoproterozoic Kangâmiut
dolerite dyke swarm, release so much Ni, Cr and Ti to
the streams that the contribution of these metals from
alkaline ultramafic rocks is easily disguised. Furthermore,
Palaeoproterozoic intrusions within the Nagssugtoqidian
domain comprise considerable volumes of charnock-
ite and syenite, enriched in Ba, Sr, P and REE (Steenfelt
1997), which give rise to anomalies that are similar to
those expected to be caused by kimberlites and lam-
proites.
However, one element, niobium, has proved con-
vincing as a `pathfinder' for kimberlites and lamproites.
Table 1 illustrates the high Nb concentrations of kim-
berlites and lamproites relative to Archaean gneisses;
even the Palaeoproterozoic syenites have relatively low
60
Table 1. Range of Nb concentrations
of various rock types in the
Sisimiut­Sarfartoq­Kangerlussuaq region
Rock type
Age
Nb ppm
Gneiss
Archaean
0.5­11
Charnockite
1.9 Ga
1­25
Syenite
1.9 Ga
5­25
Lamproite
1.2 Ga
95
Kimberlite
0.6 Ga
163­311
Beforsite
0.6 Ga
151
Carbonatite
0.6 Ga
2.3­22
From Larsen & Rex (1992) and GEUS database (unpublished).
Nb
ppm
0­11
12­15
16­24
24
>
53
°
52
°
51
°
50
°
67
°
66
°
30´
0
40 km
Søn
dre
Strø
mfjor
d
Itilleq
S
Fig. 4. Distribution of Nb in the < 0.1 mm
fraction of stream sediments. S: Sarfartoq;
black triangles: high-Mg, high-Cr
chromite; black diamonds: high-Cr,
low-Ca pyrope garnet.
GSB191-Indhold 13/12/02 11:30 Side 60
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contents of Nb. The regional stream sediment anomaly
pattern for Nb in the study region (Fig. 4) does, in fact,
coincide with the province of known kimberlites and
lamproites.
It was recognised at an early stage that the Sarfartoq
complex and surroundings were characterised by a
regional stream sediment Nb anomaly (Steenfelt 1991).
The anomaly was then attributed partly to Nb miner-
alisation, and partly to the known ultramafic alkaline
dykes. As more stream sediment data became available
(Steenfelt et al. 1993) and more kimberlite occurrences
were registered, the apparent spatial relationship
between the high Nb in stream sediments and occur-
rences of ultramafic alkaline dykes was strengthened.
Field visits to high-Nb stream sites were carried out
in 2000 and 2001 to test the validity of high Nb in stream
sediments as an indicator of kimberlite and lamproite.
At one site with a very high Nb value a lamproite dyke
was seen in outcrop in a stream gorge, and at other sites
boulders of kimberlite were observed along the stream
course. Outcrops or boulders of kimberlite or lamproite
were not found in all the high-Nb sites visited. However,
it is worthy of note that thin dykes and float of befors-
ite have been recorded some distance from the Sarfartoq
carbonatite complex; beforsite is a magnesiocarbon-
atite rock with high concentrations of Nb and LREE,
which probably contributes to the Nb-enriched province.
Stream sediment samples with high Nb and high-
pressure chromite have been collected in areas east
and south-east of known kimberlite occurrences sug-
gesting a wider extent of the kimberlite field than recog-
nised hitherto. A small cluster of high Nb values in the
north-eastern part of Fig. 4 is at present unexplained.
Kimberlites or lamproites have not so far been recorded
here. However, the generally poor exposure in the
stream surroundings would hinder ready recognition of
alkaline dykes or other rocks with high Nb such as
granitic pegmatites.
High concentrations of P, REE, Ba and Sr are recorded
in stream sediment samples collected in a 15
x 15 km
area near the coast south of Itilleq (locality I, Fig. 2).
The geochemical signature of these samples is similar
to that obtained in streams draining Palaeoproterozoic
syenitic intrusives in the Nagssugtoqidian domain
(Steenfelt 1998). It is noteworthy that the Nb concen-
trations are as low as in the Nagssugtoqidian syenites,
and hence it was not expected to find kimberlites, but
some other kind of alkaline rock.
Two field days were spent in a valley upstream from
the most pronounced stream sediment anomaly. The
area is dominated by a gneiss complex intruded by a
10 to 15 m wide Kangâmiut dyke and numerous thin,
less than 0.5 m wide, dykes and sills of grey lamprophyre
and a brown dolerite with star-shaped aggregates of phe-
nocrystic plagioclase. Blocks of a coarse-grained alka-
line ultramafic rock were frequently seen in the moraines
of the valley glacier and were particularly abundant in
the screes covering the southern valley slopes. The
alkaline rock is dominated by black, shiny amphibole
and has variable to large amounts of brown phlogopite
and light green apatite. The finds explain the geo-
chemical anomaly and enlarge the province of known
alkaline rocks in this part of Greenland.
Mantle xenoliths in kimberlitic rocks
Mantle xenoliths are widely used in studies of the man-
tle lithosphere (Menzies & Hawkesworth 1987; Nixon
1987, 1995), and are here used to shed light on how
the plate-tectonic history affected the deeper parts of
the lithosphere across the Archaean­Proterozoic tran-
sition in the Sisimiut­Sarfartoq­Kangerlussuaq region.
An extensive collection of xenoliths from several kim-
berlitic occurrences in the unreworked Archaean ter-
rane south of Søndre Strømfjord was made in 2000,
and two kimberlitic dykes containing abundant man-
tle xenoliths (localities A and B, Fig. 2) were visited and
sampled in 2001. At least 90% of the xenoliths encoun-
tered have peridotitic or pyroxenitic compositions, and
range in size from less than 1 cm to 15 cm across. Some
xenoliths contain visible purple pyrope garnet (Fig. 5)
and green Cr diopside, minerals that ­ given the right
61
Fig. 5. Kimberlitic dyke with many different types of mantle xeno-
liths (locality A, Fig. 2). Note purple garnets indicated with
arrows; hammer and pencil for scale.
GSB191-Indhold 13/12/02 11:30 Side 61
background image
chemical composition ­ may indicate P­T conditions
within the diamond stability field.
In the Palaeoproterozoic reworked Archaean terrane
north of Søndre Strømfjord another kimberlitic dyke
reported by exploration companies was visited (locality
C, Fig. 2). The dyke consists of a 5­10 m wide, c. 500 m
long train of kimberlitic boulders and outcrops in banded
grey gneiss. Peridotitic and pyroxenitic xenoliths are
abundant, ranging in size from less than 1 cm to around
10 cm. Dunitic (ol), harzburgitic (ol + opx) and lher-
zolitic (ol + opx + cpx ± gt) xenoliths were identified
in the field. The Survey campaign located two further
dykes north of Søndre Strømfjord (localities D and E,
Fig. 2). The locality D dyke is vertical, 2­5 m wide and
can be traced for c. 1.5 km. Xenoliths are much less
abundant here than in the dykes south of Søndre Strøm-
fjord, and their sizes range from less than 1 cm to about
5 cm. Macroscopically, the peridotitic xenolith types
are dunite (ol) and lherzolite (ol + cpx + opx). The local-
ity E dyke is a gently dipping (16­20°S), 30­50 cm thick
sheet, and contains small xenoliths that are mostly less
than 2 cm in diameter.
Preliminary results
Seven xenoliths from the locality A dyke have been
analysed for major element mineral chemistry by elec-
tron microprobe at the Geological Institute, University
of Copenhagen, and garnets in three of them have been
subjected to reconnaissance laser ablation analyses at
the Survey. Garnets in the same three xenoliths were
subjected to high-precision analysis of Ni by electron
microprobe, and the xenolith rock types (Table 2) have
been determined from their mineral assemblages and
estimated mineral proportions (e.g. LeBas & Streckeisen
1991).
Generally, the major element compositions of min-
erals within individual xenoliths are homogeneous
(Table 2). The average forsterite (Fo) content of the
olivines ranges from Fo87 to Fo92; garnet wehrlites con-
tain the olivines with the lowest Fo, garnet harzburgites
and garnet lherzolites the olivines with the highest Fo.
Average Ni contents are within the range of 2900 ± 360
ppm reported by Ryan et al. (1996) for garnet peri-
dotites. Orthopyroxenes contain less than 1.6 wt% CaO
and have relatively low Al
2
O
3
, the lowest values being
from ilmenite-free garnet lherzolites (0.49­0.53 wt%).
Clinopyroxene Mg/(Mg + Fe
2+
) ratios correlate posi-
tively with Cr
2
O
3
. Garnet Mg/(Mg + Fe
2+
) ratios tend to
correlate positively with Fo contents of olivine. CaO and
Cr
2
O
3
contents of garnets show limited variation within
individual xenoliths but large overall variations (Fig. 6),
and the garnets from two harzburgite xenoliths clearly
62
Table 2. Calculated temperatures and pressures for xenolith minerals from the locality A dyke
T, P
and T
Ni
calculated according to: * Nimis & Taylor (2000), Ryan et al. (1996).
ol: olivine, opx: orthopyroxene, cpx: clinopyroxene, gt: garnet, ilm: ilmenite, hzb: harzburgite, lhz: lherzolite, weh: wehrlite.
The GGU numbers refer to material from Greenland in the files of the Geological Survey of Denmark and Greenland.
Mineral
GGU sample
464002.2
464003
464006
464008.10
464008.11
analysed
Rock type
gt hzb
gt lhz
gt lhz
gt lhz
gt weh
Minerals
ol-opx-gt
ol-opx-cpx-gt
ol-opx-cpx-gt
ol-opx-cpx-gt-ilm
ol-cpx-gt
cpx
T
(
°
C) *
1039
±
30
1194
±
30
1124
±
30
1030
±
30
cpx
P
(kbar) *
48.9
±
2.3
57.8
±
2.3
68.7
±
2.3
52.5
±
2.3
gt
T
Ni
(
°
C)
1143
±
42
1101
±
18
1221
±
30
0
2
4
6
8
10
12
0
2
4
6
8
CaO (wt%)
STD
464002
464003
464006
464008.8
464008.10
464008.11
464007.1
G9
G10
Cr
2
O
3
(wt%)
Fig. 6. Garnet compositions in xenoliths from the locality A dyke,
analysed by electron microprobe. The G9­G10 boundary line is
from Gurney (1984) and Gurney & Zweistra (1995), and STD is
a reference garnet analysed along with microprobe standards. GGU
464xxx numbers refer to sample material in the files of the
Geological Survey of Denmark and Greenland.
GSB191-Indhold 13/12/02 11:30 Side 62
background image
plot within the G10 field of Gurney (1984) and Gurney
& Zweistra (1995). G10-class pyrope garnets are con-
sidered to be strongly indicative of conditions favourable
for diamond stability.
Equilibration temperatures (T) and pressures (P) for
the clinopyroxene-bearing xenoliths were calculated
using the Nimis & Taylor (2000) single clinopyroxene
thermobarometry equations (Table 2), and these tem-
perature estimates are comparable to T
Ni
values calcu-
lated using the high-precision Ni analyses and the
empirical Ni-in-garnet thermometer of Ryan et al. (1996).
Variations of Zr vs. Y in garnets of three xenoliths from
the locality A dyke are shown in Fig. 7, and averaged
chondrite-normalised REE patterns for garnet and clinopy-
roxene in each xenolith in Fig. 8. The very low Zr and
Y contents in garnets of a garnet harzburgite xenolith
(sample GGU 464002.2) are consistent with their low-
Ca character (Fig. 6) and indicate that this xenolith rep-
resents original lherzolite mantle depleted by partial
melting (Griffin et al. 1992). The garnet in sample GGU
464002.2 is more depleted in the middle and heavy REE
than the garnets in lherzolites from samples GGU 464003
and 464006. The sinuous pattern resembles that of low-
Ca garnet in a harzburgite xenolith from the Sarfartoq
area (Garrit 2000). The low REE contents support the
idea that the garnet is hosted in a rock depleted by par-
tial melting, whereas the sinuous shape may indicate post-
depletion metasomatic enrichment processes (Hoal et al.
1984) or disequilibrium garnet growth (Shimizu & Sobolev
1995). Garnet lherzolites from samples GGU 464003 and
464006 have much higher Zr and Y concentrations in
the garnets, and their chondrite-normalised REE pat-
terns are more like those of typical LREE-depleted and
MREE- to HREE-enriched garnets of primitive mantle
(e.g. Haggerty 1995). Garnets from samples GGU 464003
and 464006 plot within fields indicating phlogopite and
melt metasomatism of previously depleted mantle, respec-
tively (Fig. 7). Phlogopite occurs in the xenoliths as part
of kelyphitic rims on garnets, and in sample GGU 464003
also as a minor phase away from garnets. Ti contents
of garnets, which follow Zr in some metasomatic
processes (Griffin et al. 1999), show no significant zon-
ing. This may indicate that if metasomatic processes
affected garnet compositions, there was sufficient time
for equilibration with the metasomatising agents.
Geophysical properties of kimberlites
Airborne geophysical surveys play an important role in
diamond exploration, as kimberlites are often hidden
under surficial deposits but also often have magnetic
properties that make them distinguishable from the
country rocks (e.g. Keating 1995; Macnae 1995). Since
1996 several helicopter-borne surveys have been com-
missioned by exploration companies to cover their
licence areas in the Maniitsoq and Kangerlussuaq regions
(Olsen et al. 1999). Data from the latest helicopter-
borne survey in the Kangerlussuaq region in 2000 were
used to outline targets for the drilling that led to the
63
0
10
20
30
40
50
60
0
100
200
300
400
Zr (ppm)
Y (ppm)
Gt SEP
464002.2
464006
464003
Lh-1
Lh-2
Hz
Undepleted garnets
(high geotherm)
Depleted garnets
Melt metasomatism
Phlo gop
ite
me
tas
om
atis
m
Fig. 7. Laser ablation ICP-MS analyses of
Zr and Y in garnets from xenoliths in the
locality A dyke (this study, data from
GEUS), garnet lherzolite and garnet
harzburgite xenoliths from the Sarfartoq
area (Garrit 2000, data from Memorial
University, Canada) and in garnet
separates from the Sarfartoq area
(brown dots: Garrit 2000, data from
Macquarie University, Australia). The
coloured fields are from Griffin & Ryan
(1995) and Griffin et al. (1999), and
arrows indicate core-to-rim zonation
direction in metasomatised garnets of
Griffin et al. (1999).
GSB191-Indhold 13/12/02 11:30 Side 63
background image
confirmation of a 5 km long and 20 m wide kimberlitic
dyke in late 2001 (locality J, Fig. 2; Fig. 9; Ferguson 2001).
The petrophysical properties of 22 representative kim-
berlitic samples collected in 2001 have been determined
by the Geological Survey of Finland, and these data will
be used in modelling the geophysical response obtained
in the airborne surveys. It is planned to collect further
samples for petrophysical measurements in 2002.
Conclusions and plans for further work
Field work in 2000 and 2001 in poorly known areas has
added approximately 50 samples of kimberlitic dykes
and more than 300 kimberlitic boulders to the existing
databank.
Niobium in the fine fraction (< 0.1 mm) of stream
sediments has proved to be a convincing `pathfinder'
element for kimberlites and lamproites in the Sisimiut­
Sarfartoq­Kangerlussuaq region. Nb anomalies and the
presence of high-pressure chromite in the stream sedi-
ment samples in the eastern and south-eastern part of
the study area warrant follow-up.
The different xenolith types from the locality A dyke
and their distinctive mineral compositions clearly demon-
strate the heterogeneous character of the West Greenland
lithospheric mantle, with a vertical zonation of depleted
and metasomatised zones beneath the Archaean craton.
Temperature and pressure calculations suggest that all
xenoliths were derived from within the diamond sta-
bility field at a depth interval of 49­69 kbar, corre-
sponding to approximately 150­215 km.
Although magnetic data have been used with some
success in the search for kimberlitic dykes in the
Kangerlussuaq region, there is a need for establishing
a database with petrophysical properties of both kim-
berlitic dykes and host rocks in order to fully utilise the
geophysical data available. Magnetic profiling at ground
64
0.01
0.10
1.00
10.00
100.00
La
Ce
Nd
Sm
Eu
Gd
Dy
Ho
Yb
Lu
REE
Concentration/C1 chondrite
464002.2-GT
464006-GT
464003-GT
Lh-1-GT
Lh-2-GT
Hz-GT
Fig. 8. Chondrite-normalised REE patterns of garnets in xenoliths
from the locality A dyke (this study) and of garnets in Sarfartoq
xenoliths (Garrit 2000). Laser ablation ICP-MS analyses, same
sources as in Fig. 7.
55476
55450
55440
55433
55428
55424
55420
55416
55412
55408
55404
55399
55392
1 km
nT
Fig. 9. Magnetic total field anomaly of
locality J (Fig. 2), where a 5 km long and
20 m wide kimberlitic dyke shows up as
pronounced linear feature. Data from
helicopter-borne DIGHEM survey carried
out for Dia Met Minerals Ltd., reproduced
with permission.
GSB191-Indhold 13/12/02 11:30 Side 64
background image
level should be conducted at selected kimberlitic dyke
occurrences in future field work.
Exploration companies have produced a large vol-
ume of data relevant to diamond exploration since
1995. The data include mineral analyses of heavy min-
erals recovered from till samples, dyke and boulder
distribution maps, helicopter-borne geophysical sur-
veys, results of diamond testing of mini-bulk sampled
dykes, drill logs, etc. Compilation and publication of
all non-confidential company data submitted in assess-
ment reports to the Bureau of Minerals and Petroleum,
Government of Greenland, is planned for 2002. A com-
pilation of this type covering the North Slave Craton in
Nunavut, Canada (Armstrong 2002) has received very
positive response from industry.
The ultramafic alkaline rocks observed within the
region north-west of the Sarfartoq cone sheet structure
(Larsen 1980) have not been proved to be diamond-
iferous. However, the finds of diamonds in kimberlitic
dykes of the Torngat orogen (Derbuch 2001) ­ the
Canadian counterpart of the Nagssugtoqidian orogen ­
is an encouragement for further exploration in West
Greenland.
Acknowledgements
Majken Poulsen, a trainee funded by the Bureau of Minerals and
Petroleum, Government of Greenland, is thanked for cheerful com-
pany and valuable assistance during three weeks of the 2001
field work. Berit Wenzell is thanked for assistance during elec-
tron microprobe analysis, and Jørn Rønsbo for access to the
microprobe laboratory at the University of Copenhagen. The
Danish Lithosphere Centre, funded by the Danish National
Research Foundation, supplied microscope and computer facil-
ities for H.H., and the xenolith study is funded by a Carlsberg
Foundation grant to H.H., and by GEUS. Dia Met Minerals Ltd.
is thanked for permission to reproduce the magnetic anomaly
map of Fig. 9.
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Authors' address
Geological Survey of Denmark and Greenland, Øster Voldgade 10, DK-1350 Copenhagen K, Denmark. E-mail: smj@geus.dk
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Review of Greenland Activities 2001, pp 57-66