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doi: 1O.1111/j.1751-3928.2007.00013.

Resource Geology

Vol.57, No.2: 136-148

Original Article

Origin of Ore-forming Fluids Responsible for Gold Mineralization of the Pongkor Au-Ag Deposit, West Java, Indonesia: Evidence from Mineralogic, Fluid Inclusion Microthermometry and Stable Isotope Study of the Ciurug-Cikoret Veins



and Koichiro


Faculty of Earth Sciences and Mineral Technologtj, Institute of Teclmologtj Bandung, Bandung, Indonesia and 2Department of Earth Resources Engineering, Kyushu University, Fukuoka, Japan

Abstract The Pongkor gold-silver mine is situated at the northeastern flank of the Bayah dome, which is a product of volcanism in the Sunda-Banda Arc. The hydrothermal alteration minerals in the Ciurug-Cikoret area are typical of those formed from acid to near-neutral pH thermal waters. On the surface, illite/smectite mixed layer mineral (I/Sm), smectite and kaolinite, and spotting illite, I/Sm and K-feldspar alteration occur at the top of the mineralized zone. Silicification, K-feldspar and I/Sm zones are commonly formed in the wall rock, and gradually grade outwards into a propylitic zone. The mineralization of precious metal ore zone is constrained by fluid temperatures between 180 and 220C, and with low salinity 0.2 wt% NaCl equivalent) and boiling condition. The minimum depth of vein formation below the paleo-water table is approximately 90-130 m for the hydrostatic column. Hydrogen and oxygen isotope data for quartz and calcite show relatively homogeneous fluid composition (-53 to -68%0 8D and -5.7 to +0.3%08180 H20). There is no specific trend in the data with respect to the mineralization stages and elevation, which suggests that the ore-forming fluids did not significantly change spatially during the vein formation. The stable isotope data indicate mixing between the hydrothermal fluids and meteoric water and interaction between the hydrothermal fluids and the host rock. Keywords: Cikoret vein, Ciurug vein, epithermal, fluid inclusion microthermometry, gold mineralization, Indonesia, ore-forming fluids, Pongkor, stable isotope, West Java.

1. Introduction
Hydrothermal processes linked to alteration and mineralization are relatively well understood in epithermal deposits, especially in the low-sulfidation type, which formed in a similar environment to that of active geothermal systems (Henley & Ellis, 1983).

By the mid-1980s, genetic models were formulated to explain the occurrence and zonation of metals and minerals, to define the physicochemical conditions of ore deposition in several epithermal deposits, and to provide a basis for speculation on the sources of fluids and metals (e.g. Henley & Ellis, 1983;Hayba et al., 1985; Heald et al., 1987).

Received: 28 July 2006. Accepted for publication 3 January 2007. Corresponding author: SYAFRIZAL, Faculty of Earth Sciences and Mineral Technology, Institute of Technology Bandung, Ganesha 10, Bandung 40132, Indonesia. Email: 2007 The Authors


Journal compilation 2007 The Society of Resource Geology

Pongkor Au-Ag deposit, Indonesia

Each mineral deposit has undergone various genetic processes and has unique characteristics. The principal factors that influence the conditions in the epithermal environment, and which ultimately determine the sites and character of mineralization include geology, pressure and temperature, hydrology, chemistry of the mineralizing fluid (e.g. White & Hedenquist, 1990). The development of oxidized and acidic fluid versus reduced and near-neutral pH solutions are controlled by the proportions of magmatic and meteoric components in solution, and the extent of subsequent waterrock interaction during deposition of the epithermal deposit (e.g. Simmons et al., 2005). The Pongkor gold-silver mine is located in the district of Bogor, West Java, approximately 80 km southwest of Jakarta, Indonesia (Fig.1a). The Pongkor deposit was discovered in 1981as a result of systematic exploration (Basuki et al., 1994;van Leeuwen, 1994).The feasibility study was done in 1991 and the development started in 1992. Mining of the Ciguha and the Kubang Cicau veins began in 1994, and in 1998 for the Ciurug vein. The mine is operated by the State Mining Company, PT Aneka Tambang using the cut and fill underground mining method. As of December 2004, the proven ore reserves of the Pongkor gold mine have been estimated to be approximately 2.1 million metric tons at 13.6ppm gold and 163.2 ppm silver. In 2004, the mine produced 386,230 metric tons of ore with gold at 11.69ppm and silver at 174.47ppm (PT Antam Tbk, 2004). In the present study the origin of ore-forming fluids, condition and mechanism responsible for gold mineralization of the Pongkor gold-silver deposit are discussed based on the hydrothermal alteration mineral assemblages, estimation of paleo-water table, evidence of boiling and mixing of ore fluids supported by fluid inclusion microthermometry and stable isotope data (H, o and C).

2. Geologic environment of the Pongkor deposit

Java and Sumatra form a part of the western SundaBanda arc that has developed along the northern margin of the subducting Indo-Australian plate following the collision during the Cenozoic with the Eurasian plate (Carlile & Mitchell, 1994; Garwin et al., 2005; Setijadji et aI., 2006). The subduction is responsible for extensive and active volcanism in the Sunda-Banda arc. The Bayah dome is located in the western part of Java Island, which is the main host of several epithermal
2007 The Authors Journal compilation 2007 The Society of Resource Geology

deposits including the Pongkor deposit (Fig.1a). Ore deposits associated with volcanism in West Java include epithermal gold deposits, such as Cikotok, Cirotan, Cikidang (Rosana & Matsueda, 2002) and Cibaliung (Angeles et al., 2002;Harijoko et aI., 2004,2007). The Bayah dome consists of shale and sandstone basement overlain by the central volcanic belt of Oligocene to early Miocene age, which is composed largely of coarse volcaniclastic rocks, with intercalated limestones and sandstones (Carlile & Mitchell, 1994).Intermediate intrusive rocks are emplaced into the Paleogene and the Lower Miocene (Basuki et al., 1994;Milesi et aI., 1999).The Pongkor area is composed of Miocene volcanosedimentary rocks and Pliocene-Quaternary volcanic rocks on the northeastern flank of the Bayah dome. The geology of the Pongkor deposit has been described by Basuki et al. (1994)and Milesi et al. (1999). The deposit itself lies on the northwestern rim of a circular structure (8 x 6 km) that was interpreted as a volcano-tectonic depression (caldera), associated with ignimbrite volcanism (Milesi et aI., 1999;Fig. 1b). The Pongkor deposit is an adularia-sericite (or low-sulfidation) epithermal-type deposit (Basuki et aI., 1994; Milesi et aI., 1999) and has an age of 2.05 0.05 Ma based on 40 Ar j39 Ar da ting on adularia (Milesi et aI., 1999).The age of the Pongkor deposit is therefore similar with other gold deposits of Bayah dome: Cirotan (1.7 0.1Ma) and Ciawitali (1.5 0.05Ma) (Marcoux & Milesi, 1994) by K/ Ar, and Cikidang (2.4 0.1 Ma; Rosana & Matsueda, 2002)by K/ Ar. The volcanic rocks hosting the Pongkor deposit comprise three stacked units, known as the lower, middle, and upper volcanic units (Milesi et al., 1999;Fig. 1b, c). The lower unit is characterized by subaqeous calcalkali andesitic volcanic rocks grading laterally into epiclastic deposits. The middle unit is marked by more explosive subaerial dacitic volcanic rocks in which it is possible to distinguish various subunits: a basal subunit with accretionary lapilli tuff overlain by lapilliand-block tuff of the main ignimbrite subunit, and finally by partly reworked upper fine-grained pyroclastic tuff subunit and epiclastic siltstone of the topmost subunit. The upper unit overlies the middle unit to the north and the east of the mine, and consists mainly of andesite flows. Based on the field observation on the Ciurug Mine gallery and Ciurug Utara-Cikoret drill cores, volcanic breccia (tuff breccia) and lapilli tuff are dominant host rocks, while andesite lava and siltstone are present locally (Syafrizal et aI., 2005 and this study). These rocks represent the middle unit of the volcanic host of



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Fig.l (a) Location of Pongkor mine and other epithermal gold deposits in West Java (modified from Milesi et al., 1999). (b) Regional geological map of Pongkor area (modified from Milesi et al., 1999). (c) Geological map and veins system of SW-NE cross-section showing the Pongkor veins Pongkor deposit (modified from Milesi et al., 1999). (d) Simplified system (modified from Basuki et al., 1994; Milesi et al., 1999).

the Pongkor deposit. The tuff breccia consists of angular to subangular fragments of various rocks. The matrix contains plagioclase and fine aggregate of volcanic glass. These rocks are represented very well by exposure in the underground mine. The primary mineralization at the Pongkor mine is structurally controlled and occurs as a vein system (Fig.1c, d). The Ciurug vein is the most important vein

in this mine. The thickness of the Ciurug vein varies from 2 m near the surface up to around 24 m at depth. Total length is approximately 2 km. The vein contains 1.6 million metric tons of the proven ore reserves with an average grade of 13.8 ppm gold and 161.7 ppm silver. The Cikoret and Ciurug Utara veins were on the preliminary exploration. Scout drilling was applied in both prospect areas.
2007 The Authors 2007 The Society of Resource Geology




Pongkor Au-Ag deposit, Indonesia

3. Method
3.1. Sample The sample sets in the present study consist of surface, underground mine gallery and drill-core samples. Surface samples are mainly tuff breccia and lapilli tuff, covering 1.6 x 1.2km around the Ciurug-Cikoret area. The underground mine samples of the Ciurug vein were taken from a production tunnel at 700-, 600- and 515-m levels. The host rock and vein samples of the Cikoret and Ciurug Utara area were taken from drill-holes CKT-Ol,CKT-02,CKT-03,CUT-01Aand CUT-Ole. X-ray diffraction (XRD) analyses for host rocks and vein samples were performed using a Rigaku RINT 2100 X-ray diffractometer at Laboratory of Economic Geology, Kyushu, Japan. Clay minerals were examined in oriented samples treated with ethylene glycol. Liquidvapor homogenization temperatures (TH) and final melting temperature of ice (TM) of fluid inclusions in calcite and quartz from selected vein samples were obtained using a Linkam-600PM heating-cooling stage at Laboratory of Economic Geology, Kyushu, Japan with the analytical method based on Roedder (1984) and Bodnar et aI. (1985). The hydrogen and oxygen isotopes were analyzed from 13 quartz samples from the Ciurug and Cikoret veins. The carbon and oxygen isotopes were obtained from seven calcite samples from the Ciurug, Cikoret and Ciurug Utara veins. All of the aforementioned analyses were conducted at the Department of Earth Resources Engineering, Kyushu University except for the stable isotope analyses. The stable isotope ratios were analyzed at the Institute of Geology and Geophysics, Chinese Academy of Sciences, Beijing, China.

Fig.2 Surface alteration map of the Ciurug-Cikoret area. Alb, albite; ChI, chlorite; Cr, cristobalite; Ct, calcite; I, illite; I/Sm, illite-smectite mixed layer mineral; Kao, kaolinite; K-Feld, potassium feldspar; Sm, smectite; Tri, tridymite; Qz, quartz.

4. Hydrothermal alteration and ore mineralogy

4.1. Hydrothermal alteration Hydrothermal alteration on the surface of the CiurugCikoret area is dominated by argillic alteration consisting chiefly of quartz-smectite-kaolinite (Fig.2). Cristobalite tridymite are present locally in the southwest part of the Ciurug area. The I/Sm-argillic alteration consists of both illite-illite/smectite mixed-layer and kaolin-smectite minerals occuring in a limited area surrounding the Ciurug vein, central part of the Ciurug Utara area and western part of the Cikoret area. The chlorite and/or illite, calcite, albite illite/smectite mixed layer K-feldspar mineral assemblages are present
2007 The Authors Journal compilation 2007 The Society of Resource Geology

locally enclosed in the inner side of the 1/Sm-argillic alteration. The propylitic alteration and locally the I/Sm alteration appear dominant in the deeper part. The propylitic alteration in the host rock of the Ciurug vein is defined by the common presence of quartz-chlorite and/ or illite-calcite. The K-feldspar alteration occurs locally in the wall rock at 600 m and became dominant in the wall rock and host rock at 515 m (Syafrizal et al., 2005). The argillic alteration mostly occurs in the shallow part of drill holes (Fig.3). The I/Sm alteration (marked by presence of illite-rich illite/smectite mixed layer minerals illite) occurs in the relatively few Cikoret drill core samples (CKT-Ol,CKT-02 and CKT-03).The K-feldspar and I/Sm alteration are restricted along the boundary of the vein zone. The propylitic alteration (marked by the presence of chlorite, calcite and albite assemblages) is a major alteration and predominantly


Syafrizal et al.

800 --, ~













Sampling point (Kao \ Vein or veinlets 115m


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~~ ~~ Propylitlc (Chi, Ct, Alb, IISm Py Lau)

Fig.3 Simplifiedlongitudinal section of the hydrothermal alteration of Cikoretand Ciurug Utara area based on drill-coresamples CKT-02,CKT-03,CUT-OIAand CUT-Ole.Alb, albite; Chl, chlorite; Chl/Sm, chlorite-smectite mixed layer; Ct, calcite;I, illite; l/Sm, illite-smectite mixed layer; Kao,kaolinite;K-Feld,potassium feldspar; Lau, laumontite; Py, pyrite;Sm,smectite.

occur in the deeper part of drill holes. The boundary of alteration zone in these drill holes is relatively unclear. Laumontite commonly occurs in the CKT-01, CKT-02 and CKT-03 drill core samples, where this mineral usually appears in the weak propylitic alteration (e.g, Reyes, 1990). The mineral assemblages of the Ciurug Utara drill core samples (CUT-01A and CUT-Ole) are generally similar with the mineral assemblages in the Cikoret area (Fig.3), but the intensity (degree) of alteration is more intense, Smectite overprints on the I/Sm and propylitic alteration zone, suggesting that the hydrothermal fluid filled the fractures. K-feldspar seems dominant in the CUT-OlC drill core samples. 4.2. Vein formation and ore mineralogy Characteristics of the Ciurug, Cikoret and Ciurug Utara veins are generally similar to those of other veins in the Pongkor deposit. These carbonate-quartz veins are characterized by the association with small amounts of sulfide minerals, the presence of silver sulfide-sulfosalt minerals, the high gold grade of ore and the Au/ Ag content of electrum (Syafrizal et al., 2005; present study). Hydraulic breccia connected to carbonate-quartz stockworks or veinlets is commonly developed in the wall rock (footwall and hanging wall of vein). The Ciurug vein shows four main mineralization stages where each discrete stage is characterized by a specific facies; these are, from early to late: carbonate-quartz (CQ), manganese carbonate-quartz (MCQ), bandedmassive quartz (BMQ) and gray sulfide-quartz (GSQ) facies. The CQ facies commonly occurs in the Ciurug vein. This facies is dominated by calcite and quartz

with banded and colloform texture. Sulfide contents are low. The MCQ facies was rarely formed in the Ciurug vein. This facies is characterized by rhodochrosite. The BMQ facies commonly occurs in the Ciurug vein. This facies is dominated by quartz veins with banded and massive texture. This is locally clayrich, and usually contains sulfide minerals. The GSQ facies locally occurs in the Ciurug vein. This facies is usually rich in high grade gold ores. This facies exhibits massive-banded-colloform textures and is locally brecciated. The MCQ and GSQ facies rarely appear in the Cikoret and Ciurug Utara veins, where the CQ and BMQ facies dominantly occur in these veins. Milesi et al. (1999)reported that oxidized manganese carbonate (which they termed the manganese oxide quartz [MOQJ facies) is well developed in the Pasir Jawa, Kubang Cicau and Ciguha vein, with a thickness up to 2 m, where manganese oxide pockets contains a high grade of gold. The weathered manganese carbonate quartz facies can also occur in the Ciurug vein, because this facies is probably controlled by weathering. The high degree of oxidation (including that caused by infiltration of surface water) is a major contributor to this process. The prill.cipal gangue minerals of the Ciurug, Cikoret and Ciurug Utara veins are quartz and calcite. The subordinate gangue minerals are adularia, clay minerals (chlorite, illite, illite/smectite mixed layer mineral, kaolinite and smectite), Ca-Mn-Mg-Fe carbonate minerals such as rhodochrosite, kutnahorite and ankerite. The clay minerals and Ca-Mn-Mg-Fe carbonate minerals were determined by XRD (Milesi et al., 1999; Warmada et al., 2003; Syafrizal et al., 2005; present study) and electron microprobe (Milesi et al., 1999; Warmada et al., 2007).
2007TheAuthors Journalcompilation 2007 TheSociety ofResource Geology


Pongkor Au-Ag deposit, Indonesia

The highest grade of gold in the Ciurug vein is distributed in the underground mine between 700 m and 515 m (Syafrizal et al., 2005). This high gold grade occurred in the late mineralization stages (MCQ and GSQ facies) with a thin sulfide band in vein quartz. Adularia and chlorite/smectite mixed layer also occur at these locations. However, several anomalies such as the high contents of Zn, Pb and Cu in the wall rock; abundant base metal minerals (sphalerite, chalcopyrite, bornite and galena); and also depletion in the Au content of electrum in the southern part of the Ciurug vein at 515 m; are recognized, suggesting that the base metal rich mineralization occurred in this part (Syafrizal et al., 2005).

5. Fluid inclusion microthermometry and stable isotope study

5.1. Fluid inclusion microthermometry Sixteen samples representing different stages (facies) and different elevations of the Ciurug vein were selected for fluid inclusion study. Seven samples from the Cikoret vein and 12 samples from the Ciurug Utara veins representing two stages (CQ and BMQ facies) of mineralization were selected for fluid inclusion studies (Table1). The inclusions observed were assigned to probable primary or secondary origin. Microthermometry was carried out predominantly on probable primary inclusions in calcite and quartz. Fluid inclusions are common and generally between 5 and 20 fLmin diameter. According to their phase relationships at room temperature, two types of aqueous inclusions were observed. They are two-phase liquid-rich (very common) and twophase vapor-rich inclusions (locally). A summary of the TH and the final TMof each sample is given in Table 1. The fluid inclusions (>5 fLm in the longest dimension) are abundant in calcite (CQ-MCQ facies) from all levels. Fluid inclusions in fine-grained quartz (BMQ and GSQ facies) with massive and banded textures are generally rare. They are <10 fLmin the longest dimension with regular (generally oval to rounded) shape, showing consistent liquid to vapor ratios with locally present vapor-rich inclusions (Fig.4a, b). Generally, the TH increases with depth, especially in quartz samples. At the 700- and 600-m levels, the TH for the CQ-MCQ facies (dominated by inclusions in calcite) is similar to that of the BMQ facies (dominated by inclusions in quartz) at 170-210C. The TH at the southern part at 515m (all facies) has a slightly higher range (200-230C)
2007 The Authors Journal compilation 2007 The Society of Resource Geology

than that at the 700- and 600-m levels (Syafrizal et aI., 2005; present study). The fluid inclusions from the Ciurug vein have very low salinity 0.2 wt% NaCl equivalent). The different TH range between the shallow (700 m and 600 m) and deepest levels (southern part at 515 m) is complemented by a slight difference in the lowest TM.Inclusions in samples from 700 m and 600 m have the lowest TM at -1.4C (equivalent to a salinity of 2.4 wt% NaCl), while those from the southern part at 515 m have the lowest TM at -1.8C (equivalent to a salinity of 3.0 wt% NaCl). The majority of TH data from Cikoret and Ciurug Utara veins (drill-core samples) fall within 180-200C for CQ facies and 170-220C for BMQ facies. There is no clear relationship between TH with depth (vertical range of sample locality is 150 m). The low TH data on BMQ facies is mostly in fluid inclusions that are trapped on the edge of crystals. In contrast, the majority of TM data for both stages of mineralization fall within -1.0 to O.Oc,corresponding to 0-0.7 wt% NaCl equivalent. 5.2. Evidence of boiling Vapor-rich inclusions often appear to coexist with liquid-rich inclusions (Fig.4c, d), which is indicative of boiling during entrapment. Such evidence of boiling was observed in several samples, but most noticeably in association with the late stage mineralization (BMQ and GSQ facies). The highly variable TH suggest heterogeneous trapping of vapor and liquid. Boiling of fluids can be established if primary inclusion populations include two types, one that is vapor-rich and homogenizes to a vapor upon heating, and another that is a small vapor bubble, which homogenize to a liquid. If boiling or some other type of fluid phase separation took place during mineral growth, coexisting vapor-rich and liquid-rich inclusions may uniquely define both pressure and temperature at the time of trapping (Roedder, 1984;Bodnar et al., 1985;Brown, 1998). Relationship between salinity of the ore forming fluid and the THprovides a powerful tool to determine the roles of boiling, mixing and cooling (Brown, 1998). The plots of TH versus TMand salinity for fluid inclusions in quartz-calcite from the Ciurug, Cikoret and Ciurug Utara veins are shown in figureS. Hedenquist and Henley (1985) described the spatial relationship between TH and TM.According to their description, the Ciurug, Cikoret and Ciurug Utara veins clearly show evidence of boiling (Fig.5). Some are fluid inclusions with relatively high salinity and TH < 230C, they may


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CKT-02-03 CUT-01A-25 Cikoret vein Host mineral Calcite VZ-03C VZ-03G CKT-01-25 CKT-02-18 CUT-01A-29Quartz 162-206 (20; 186) BMQ CQ-MCQ Quartz CKT-01-18 10-25 BMQ-GSQ CQ 5-30 140-322 152-375 (15) Quartz -1.2 195) 268) (18; 154-351 (26; 231) CQ-BMQ 183-228 -2.1 0.2-3.5 (28; (0.9) (23; -0.5) 10-60 10-50 15-80 3-35 180-303 156-356 157-203 170-232 175-319 162-216 154-281 (12) (30) (25) -0.2 -1.1 -1.7 -13.6 -0.1 -0.8 -0.4 0.0-0.4 0.2-2.9 0.0-0.2 0.0-17.4 0.0-1.4 0.0-0.7 1.4-1.9 (16; (13; (7; (24; (22; (25; to to 197) 215) 214) 179) 0.0 -0.8 -0.1 217) 200) 190) (1.7) (0.7) (0.0) (0.4) 0.0 (7.3) (6; (22; (6; (2; (12; -0.1) 1.0) -0.4) 0.0) -5.0) 187-326 154-279 -2.4 (56; (32; 197) (49; (32; 157-350 -1.8 0.0-3.1 (24; 240) (10; -0.3) 5-25 5-40 5-50 5-20 151-287 166-351 170-309 166-339 172-316 171-256 (10) 153-245 176-212 (20) -0.7 -1.3 -0.3 -1.4 -6.5 0.4-1.2 0.0-2.2 0.0-2.1 0.0-0.5 0.0-2.4 (6; (22; (21; (29; (25; (57; (30; (4; 194) 207) 209) 242) 202) 226) 210) -0.2 (0.1) (0.6) (0.3) (19; (24; (20; (16; (48; (4; (3; (17; -0.9) -0.5) -0.4) 5-45 165-335 187-342 0.0-0.0 0.0 (23; 206) 222) (0.0) (12; (13; 179-305 -1.6 0.0-2.7 (27; ~ 211) -0.2) 177-351 0.0-1.2 (20; 227) (0.2) (14; -0.1) 5-16 187-360 169-231 -0.9 0.0-1.6 (35; (18; 256) 205) (23; 10-90 0.0-4.0 Stage/ facies CKT-02-44 0.0-1.9 0.0-9.9 (1.4) (0.5) CKT-02-20 Size range T (mean) CUT-01A-32 H I'range T (wt% M range (11; NaCl mean) (11; equivalent) mean) (0C) CC) Ciurug Utara vein CUT-01A-22 CKT-01-14

i:i' continued

(fl '< P J

Pongkor Au-Ag deposit, Indonesia

be accompanied by gas loss after mixing with steamheated COrrich water (Hedenquist & Henley, 1985; Cooke & Simmons, 2000). In contrast, a few fluid inclusions with relatively high salinity and high TH represent the effect of gas loss due to boiling of deep chloride water (Cooke & Simmons, 2000).

5.3. Stable isotope geochemistry

Fourteen samples (three samples of calcite and 11 samples of quartz) representing different stages (facies) and different elevations of the Ciurug vein, four samples (two samples of calcite and two samples of quartz) from the Cikoret drill-core samples and two calcite samples from the Ciurug Utara drill-core samples were and C). analyzed for light stable isotope ratios (H, The list of samples and the result of analysis are presented in Table 2. The 8180 value of H20 in the hydrothermal solution is calculated from the 8180quartz and 8180calcite of samples with some assumptions. The hydrothermal solution is assumed to be in isotopic equilibrium with quartz and calcite using the temperature estimated by TH of the fluid inclusions in this study. The 8180water of hydrothermal solution were calculated using the fractionation factor of oxygen isotope between quartz and water (Matsuhisa et aI., 1979, quoted in Field & Fifarek, 1985) and that between calcite and water (Friedman & O'Neill, 1977, quoted in Field & Fifarek, 1985). The results of isotopic fractionation calculation are presented in Table 2.

5.3.1. Oxygen and hydrogen isotopes Quartz in gold-bearing parts of veins (BMQ-GSQ fracies) from the Ciurug and Cikoret veins has 8180 ranging +8.6 to +10.8%0 (Table2). The hydrogen isotope ofhydrothermal solution from the same samples ranges from -68.0 to -52.9%0 (Table2). There are no major differences or tendency between the isotopic data, the mineralization stages and elevation. The 8D and 8180 for the presentday meteoric water of the Pongkor area are -35.1 and -5.8%0, respectively (Rosana & Matsueda, 2002). Oxygen isotope equilibrium temperatures based on fluid inclusion micro thermometry study for each quartz samples of the Ciurug and Cikoret veins are approximately 190-220C (Table 1). The calculated 8180 of water (from quartz) indicates that the ore-forming hydrothermal fluids at Pongkor had 8180water ranging from approximately -5.7 to +0.3%0 (Table 2). Figure 6 shows the 8Dwater and 8180water of the Ciurug sample compared with the present-day meteoric water



~ o U


2007 The Authors Journal compilation 2007 The Society of Resource Geology


Syafrizal et al.

Fig.4 Photomicrographs of fluid inclusions trapped in calcite and quartz crystal of the Cikoret and Ciurug Utara veins.

(a) Two-phase liquid-rich primary fluid inclusion trapped in calcite (sample: CUT-OlA-22);(b) two-phase liquid-rich primary fluid inclusion trapped in coarse-grain quartz (sample: CKT-02-20);(c) vapor-rich fluid inclusions trapped in quartz (sample: CUT-OlA-34); (d) vapor-rich fluid inclusion coexists with liquid-rich fluid inclusions (sample: CKT-01-18). L, liquid; V,vapor. Bars, 20 fl-m.

(-5.8%0) and meteoric-rich hydrothermal fluids of the hot spring in the Ungaran area (Kohno, 2005). The ODwaler of hydrothermal fluid for mineralization at the Pongkor deposit are apparently lower than those of the present-day meteoric water at Pongkor and Ungaran, and slightly lower than thermal water venting at Ungaran. This figure also shows an oxygen-shift from the meteoric water line, suggesting enrichment in 180in hydrothermal fluid by interaction with rocks. 5.3.2. Oxygen and carbon isotopes

The Ol3Cof the Ciurug, Cikoret and Ciurug Utara veins have a range between -5.7 and -4.7%0 (Table 2). The Ol3C of the Ciurug, Cikoret and Ciurug Utara calcite veins from the present study are similar with that

reported by Wagner et al. (2005). The Ol3C of calcite from the Pongkor area are typical of carbonates from epithermal deposits (-10 to 0%0, Field & Fifarek, 1985). The variations of Ol3C of calcite samples from the Ciurug, Cikoret and Ciurug Utara are relatively narrow, suggesting that the hydrothermal fluids were relatively homogeneous and less contaminated by sedimentary basement (e.g. Field & Fifarek, 1985; Wagner et al., 2005). The 0180 and Ol3C of calcite data from the present study and from Wagner et al. (2005) are presented in Figure 7. The 0180 versus 013C plot shows a trend (positive slope) of 0180 and 0l3e. Wagner et al. (2005) suggested that the Pongkor data are consistent with being the result of progressive cooling, boiling or fluid mixing. 2007TheAuthors Journal compilation 2007The Societyof ResourceGeology


Pongkor Au-Ag deposit, Indonesia

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/_ ..
:, "f__ ~ .. o libI""'~,~8" ~"ro;JP.~""_

(with or without disseminated pyrite, carbonate, minor barite, and minor anhydrite) are generally well developed, especially in host volcanic rocks, and may conceal the underlying ore bodies (Simmons et aI., 2005). At the shallowest depths in the epithermal environment, steam-heated advanced argillic alteration occurs with or without silica sinters that form at the paleosurface. Adularia-sericite-type deposits are characterized by the dominance of sericitic alteration that borders a silicified zone near the vein (Hayba et aI., 1985; Heald et al., 1987). Also near the vein, fine-grained K-feldspar and/or chlorite are often disseminated in the wall rock. Propylitic alteration is usually encountered in host rock in conditions of decreased permeability further from the main fluid channel-way (Corbett & Leach, 1998). The adularia-sericite-type deposit forms in a hydrothermal system where surficial waters mix with deeper, heated waters, which come from a heat source at depth where neutral to weakly acidic, alkali chloride waters are dominant (Heald et aI., 1987). Fluids of near-neutral pH are present in the up flow zones of most geothermal systems. In volcanic rocks these fluids result in an alteration assemblage including minerals such as quartz, albite, adularia, illite and/ or smectite, chlorite, zeolite and other calc-silicates and calcite. The distribution of some of these minerals (particularly clays, zeolite and calc-silicates) is sensitive with temperature, and known to reflect the isotherms in an active system (Henley & Ellis, 1983; Reyes, 1990; White & Hedenquist, 1990; Hedenquist et aI., 1996). The mineral assemblage of quartz, K-feldspar (adularia), albite, illite, chlorite, calcite, epidote and pyrite develops at >240C deep in the epithermal environment through alteration by near-neutral pH waters. The mineral assemblage containing illite, smectite, chlorite, mixed-layered clays, pyrite, calcite and chalcedony is developed at 180 to 220C, deep on the periphery and in shallow environment through alteration by steamheated CO2-rich water. The hydrothermal alteration minerals present at the Ciurug, Cikoret and Ciurug Utara vein include cristobalite, tridymite, kaolinite, smectite, illite-smectite mixed layer, chlorite-smectite mixed layer, illite, chlorite, K-feldspar and laumontite. These overall hydrothermal alteration minerals could indicate that this studied area was heated to >240C and that a cooler temperature of around 100C occurred on the surface area. Intense quartz (silicification), K-feldspar and IISm alteration commonly surrounds ores and reflects the


: '

0 ..



;J'-'-- .._ .. BOIling "w o <5"

_._-.. ,

,..... . (b) -2 150 350 300 250 200 0 0 -1 ro "" --'_. ___ Boiling Boiling and gas toss ;;r -5." . 't.. 0. -.-~- ~'l',"? j:.90 0.0 "o.,n 0Boiling and gas loss


-5 -4 -3

. . ~; : ., . '''1~


'" c:


10 10 g>

1 5

'" ~ -< ~:



Fig.5 Relationship between homogenization and melting temperature for fluid inclusions from the (a) Ciurug (e, quartz, n = 125; 0, calcite, n = 189);(b) Ciurug Utara (e, quartz, n = 143; 0, calcite, n = 138) and (c) Cikoret veins (e, quartz, n = 79; 0, calcite, n = 54).

6. Discussion and conclusions

6.1. Zonation and temperature of hydrothermal alteration
The secondary minerals in the Ciurug and Cikoret area are typical of alteration minerals formed from acid to near-neutral pH thermal waters (e.g. Corbett & Leach, 1998). The hydrothermal alteration of drill core samples in the Cikoret and Ciurug Utara area are relatively dominated by argillic and propylitic alteration, where the IISm and K-feldspar alteration zone occur locally enveloping the vein zone (Fig. 3). At shallow levels (150-0 m below the paleo-water table), blankets of argillic alteration consisting of illite and other clays
2007 The Authors Journal compilation 2007 The Societyof ResourceGeology


200 220 4.7 2 -5.0 1 5.7 4.8 5.1 05 00 20 90 Calcite 200 210 190 SMOW PDB Mineral 9.9 -3.9 -2.3 -2.1 0.3 195 -5.7 -1.7 -3.4 -2.7 -4.8 -2.8 -2.2 -2.9 -3.7 -4.3 -1.2 -2.4 200 -5.7 -25.4 210 -4.8 -23.9 -4.7 -24.2 190 10.8 -25.7 -21.9 -5.0 7.9 8.9 9.6 9.1 9.2 Facies -53.4 -54.2 9.3 -58.2 -24.3 8.8 SMOW -4.2 -64.8 -22.4 -5.1 -52.9 -58.5 -58.8 -57.1 -53.8 -56.7 8.7 8.6 7.3 CQ BMQ Quartz BMQ-GSQ CQ-BMQ -55.2 -68.0 (%0) (%0) (0C) SlBOeakite Sl3Ceakite Tempt SlBOwater:!: Syafrizal et al. SlBOquartz isotope fractionation' belemnite; SMOW, sea mid-oceanic TH,homogenization melting point. The 8180 values of calcite sample (as isotope fractionation. PDB) are converted to SMOW using water; the following equation from temperature; Coplen et al. TM,ice (1983):8180SMOW = 1.030918l80PDB + 30.91 %0. t Temperature based on the homogenization temperatures from the fluid inclusion rnicrothermometry in the present study. t Calculated using equilibrium onate-quartzand; PDB, pee dee vater 8D ...



sharp increase in permeability associated with fluid conduits; accordingly, in host rocks with low permeability, alteration may be closely restricted to the selvages of veins or veinlets (Fig. 3).

6.2. Origin of fluids responsible for primary mineralization

Based on the fluid inclusion analyses in the present study, all data of the minimum trapping temperatures range between 170 and 230C. The Ciurug vein shows a tendency of increasing minimum trapping temperature with depth (170-210C at level 700 m and 200-230C at level 515 m). Depth is related directly to pressure in the shallow environment where near-hydrostatic
o -2


10 0

-50 -75a -25 ~ -15 -100 -125

IJ) ::E :::: Cl
Pongkorriver Ungaran(nver} Uf"9M<lll (hot



----+- ..
O-shift .-.




U,;<m.9m" nVok'"''''''''





0"0 (%0, V5MOW)


- ;- ~ - ,. 'r
a 2 4 6


Fig.6 SDwater and SlBOwaterof hydrothermal fluid from quartz samples from the Ciurug and Cikoret veins. The composition of current meteoric water come from the Pongkor River (Rosana & Matsueda, 2002). The composition of meteoric water-rich fluids (hot spring) come from the Ungaran area, Central Java (Kohno, 2005). SMOW, sea mid-oceanic water; VSMOW, Vienna sea mid-oceanic water.







Fig.7 Sl3C and SIBOof calcite samples from the Pongkor deposit. (e) Wagner et a1. (2005); (.) Ciuregvein (present study); (T) Cikoret-Ciurug Utara vein (present study). 2007 The Authors Journal compilation 2007 The Society of Resource Geology


Pongkor Au-Ag deposit, Indonesia

conditions prevail, with maximum temperature largely controlled by the boiling point-depth curve (e.g. Haas, 1971). Based on the minimum trapping temperatures for the shallow depth samples of the Ciurug, Cikoret and Ciurug Utara veins, the calculated minimum depth of vein formation below the paleo-water table is approximately 90-130 m for the hydrostatic column. The alteration study indicates hydrothermal fluids of near-neutral pH. According to ore mineralogy and fluid inclusions analysis, the precious metal-rich zone formed within a TH between 180 and 220C and very low salinities 0.2 wt% NaCl equivalent), whereas the base metal-rich zone occurred within a TH between 200 and 230C with salinities <3.0 wt% NaCl equivalent (Syafrizal et a/., 2005).Fluid inclusion characteristics indicate fluid boiling as an ore deposition mechanism. Zoning between base and precious metals is commonly recognized in low-sulfidation epithermal deposits, with precious metals tending to more abundant in the upper part of the deposits (e.g. Simmons & Browne, 1997). The development of boiling and/ or mixing conditions produces sharp physical and chemical gradients conducive to precious and base metal precipitation (Simmons et a/., 2005). The stable isotope data (H, 0 and C) of the Ciurug, Cikoret and Ciurug Utara veins show that the oreforming fluids did not significantly change temporally and spatially during the vein formation. The hydrogen and oxygen isotope data suggest that the ore-forming fluids are dominated by mixing of the meteoric water and deeply circulating 180-emiched fluids. Primary mineralization in the Ciurug-Cikoret veins was produced by an extensive geothermal system. Envelopes of K-feldspar, IjSm and propylitic alteration around veins indicate that narrow structures formed conduits, which focused hydrothermal fluids (Fig.3). From fluid inclusion and hydrothermal alteration studies, the fluid compositions were of near-neutral pH and dilute type. Dilute hydrothermal fluids that are able to transport the highest gold concentration at temperatures <300C are those with high dissolved H2S content and coincidentally CO2 (Hedenquist & Henley, 1985). Therefore, a continuous flow of boiling fluids into structures provides gold mineralization in an epithermal environment (e.g. Hedenquist & Henley, 1985). Fluid inclusion microthermometry suggests that the dominant mechanism for gold and silver precipitation at the Ciurug-Cikoret veins was boiling of ascending high-temperature water. Mixing between cool waters and deeply circulating 180-emiched fluids (Fig.6) are
2007 The Authors Journal compilation 2007 The Society of Resource Geology

proposed as an additional mechanism for precipitating precious metals at Pongkor deposit. However, the relatively narrow range of the 8180 values of quartz and calcite samples and the lack of specific trend with respect to mineralization stages and elevation suggest that the ore-forming fluids did not significantly change temporally and spatially during the vein formation, and indicate that mixing was not the most important ore mineralization process.

The authors would like to thank the management of PT Aneka Tambang for the permission for and support of our fieldwork and for valuable information and data. We also wish to thank Ir. Herian Sudarman Hemes, Ir. Eko Janu Herlambang, and their staff for their support during the fieldwork. Thanks are due to Professor Emeritus Eiji Izawa and Dr Youshinobu Motomura for useful discussion about hydrothermal alteration and mineralogic study.

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Rosana, M. F and Matsueda, H. (2002) Cikidang hydrothermal gold deposit in Western Java, Indonesia. Resour. Geol., 52, 341-352. Setijadji, L. D., Kajino, 5., Imai, A and Watanabe, K. (2006) Cenozoic island arc magmatism in Java island (Sunda Arc, Indonesia): Clues on relationships between geodynamics of volcanic centers and ore mineralization. Resour. Geol., 56, 267-291. Simmons, S. F and Browne, P. R. L. (1997) Saline fluid inclusions in sphalerite from the Broadlands-Ohaaki geothermal system: A coincidental trapping of fluids boiled toward dryness. Econ. Geol., 92,485-489. Simmons, S. F, White, N. C. and John, D. A (2005) Geological characteristics of epithermal precious and base metal deposits. 1/7 Society of Economic Geologists 100thAnniversary Volume, 485-522. Syafrizal, Imai, A, Motomura, Y and Watanabe, K. (2005) Characteristics of gold mineralization at the Ciurug Vein, Pongkor Gold-Silver Deposit, West Java, Indonesia. Resour. Geol., 55, 225-238. van Leeuwen, T M. (1994) 25 years of mineral exploration and discovery in Indonesia. J. Geochem. Explor., 50, 13-90. Wagner, T, William-Jones, A. E. and Boyce, A J. (2005) Stable isotope-based modeling of the origin and genesis of an unusual Au-Ag-Sn-W epithermal system at Cirotan, Indonesia. Chern. Geol., 219, 237-260. Warmada, 1. W, Lehmann, B. and Simandjuntak, M. (2003) Polymetallic sulfides and sulfosalts of the Pongkor epithermal gold-silver deposit, West Java, Indonesia. Can. Mineral., 41, 185-200. Warmada, I W, Lelm1ann, B., Simandjuntak, M. and Hemes, H. S. (2007) Fluid inclusion, rare-earth element and stable isotope study of carbonate minerals from the Pongkor epithermal gold-silver deposit, West Java, Indonesia. Resour. Geol., 57, 124-135. White, N. C. and Hedenquist, J. W (1990) Epithermal environments and style of mineralization: Variations and their causes, and guidelines for exploration. J. Geochem. Explor., 36, 445-474.


2007 The Authors Journal compilation 2007 The Society of Resource Geology