Kupferschiefer mineralization in the light of organic geochemistry and coal petrology studies

Stanisław Speczik


The paper provides evidence for the contribution of organic matter and its secondary oxidation to the mechanism of metal precipitation in the Permian Kupferschiefer formation of southwestern Poland. Both solid (kerogen) and soluble organic material reveal symptoms of epigenetic oxidation in certain areas of the Kupferschiefer formation that display ore-grade mineralization (Lubin - Sieroszowice and Konrad deposits). The specific composition of oxidation effects differs greatly from previously known oxidation effects of organic material. Thus, it is suggested, that oxidized metal-bearing solutions came into contact with hydrogen-rich Kupferschiefer in areas related to major tectonic zones and Variscan palaeohighs. The Kupferschiefer, acting as a geochemical trap for metal, was a site of redox-type reactions. The reduction processes resulted in base metal precipitation while oxidation affected the hydrocarbons. The Rote F¬ule zones served as conduits for mostly ascending solutions. The horizontal distribution pattern of the oxidation marking compounds in the Kupferschiefer formation implies that the oxidation of organic material, and therefore mineralization, most likely occurred during late diagenesis or even early catagenesis.

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