Skip to main content

Minor and trace elements in the Spremberg-Graustein-Schleife Kupferschiefer deposit: A deportment study

The sediment-hosted Spremberg-Graustein-Schleife deposit is located in Lusatia, eastern Germany. Mineralization occurs in the lower Zechstein units, extending from the Grauliegend conglomerates and sandstones into the overlying organic-rich Kupferschiefer black shales and Zechstein carbonates. Around 100 Mt of Cu-Ag ore is present within the deposit. The ore is also enriched in Pb, Zn, Co, Ni, Au, Bi, Se, Re, and Ge (in addition to Cu and Ag). Despite the metal endowment, detailed quantitative metal deportment studies have not been carried out for this deposit, or indeed any other Kupferschiefer deposit. This study aims to bridge the gap. Core samples representing the complete mineralization interval (31 m in total) at three different sites within the deposit were mineralogically and geochemically analyzed. To ensure a comprehensive, high-quality and internally consistent dataset, various analytical methods including X-ray fluorescence (XRF), ICP-OES, ICP-MS, X-ray diffraction (XRD), Mineral Liberation Analysis (MLA), electron probe micro-analysis (EPMA) and laser ablation ICP-MS (LA-ICP-MS) were performed. The results reveal that the concentration and main hosts of copper and potential by-products vary vertically between the stratigraphical units, and spatially at different locations of the deposit. Such information will eventually help to predict deportments across the deposit, track each element within the minerals processing plants and also to get an idea of expected recoveries and thus optimizing the procedure.


Zahra Nourizenouz1, Bradley Martin Guy1, Robert Möckel1, Doreen Ebert1, Max Frenzel1
1Helmholtz-Zentrum Dresden Rossendorf, Helmholtz Institute Freiberg for Resource Technology, Chemnitzer Str. 40, 09599 Freiberg, Germany
GeoBerlin 2023