The norite belt in the Mesoarchaean Maniitsoq structure, southern West Greenland: conduit-type Ni-Cu mineralisation in impact-triggered, mantle-derived intrusions?
With the recent discovery of the giant, deeply eroded, 3 Ga Maniitsoq impact structure in southern West Greenland (Garde 2010), an enigmatic, c. 75 by 15 km large, curvilinear belt of undeformed norite intrusions with Ni-Cu mineralisation was re-interpreted as representing crustally contaminated melts derived from the mantle in the wake of the impact (Fig. 1; Garde et al. 2012). The norite belt (Nielsen 1976; Secher 1983) was discovered in the early 1960s by the mining and exploration company Kryolitselskabet Øresund A/S, and more than one hundred shallow exploration holes were drilled by the company in the period 1965–1971. The mineralisation has subsequently been investigated by Cominco Ltd., Falconbridge Ltd. and NunaMinerals A/S. In 2011, the re-interpretation of the norite belt, and recent availability of improved airborne geophysical exploration tools, prompted the Canadian company North American Nickel Inc. (NAN) to resume exploration.
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