Katugin, Katuginskoe

Zabaikalsky Kray, Russia

Main commodities: Ta Nb REE Zr Ti U
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The Katugin or Katuginskoe Nb-Ta-Zr-REE-Y deposit is located in the southern part of the Kodar-Udokan District in the western third of the Aldan Shield. It falls within Zabaikalsky Kray, northeast of Lake Baikal, in eastern Russia, and ~620 km NNE of Chita, the capital of the Kray. The deposit is ~75 km SE of Novaya Chara railway station of the Baikal-Amur Mainline (BAM) loop of the Trans-Siberian Railway (#Location: 56° 17' 17"N, 119° 15' 7"E).

For details of the geological setting and stratigraphy of Kodar-Udokan District, see the the separate Udokan record.

Katugin is located near the northern margin of the east-west trending Stanovoy Suture Zone which separates the Chara-Olekma terrane of the Aldan Shield, the southern part of the Archaean to Palaeoproterozoic Siberian craton, from the Selenga-Stanavoy terrane to the south. The latter terrane comprises Late Palaeozoic to Mesozoic volcano-sedimentary rocks of the Central Asian Orogenic Belt overlying an Archaean to Palaeoproterozoic basement.

The deposit is related to two relatively small A-type alkaline granite intrusions enriched in Ta-Nb-REE and Zr, the 18 km2 Western and 3 km2 Eastern intrusions, that comprise the 2066±6 Ma Katugin Complex (Sklyarov et al., 2016; Gladkocub et al., 2017; Starikova et al., 2019). The Katugin Complex intrudes Palaeoproterozoic sedimentary rock of the Kodar Group that were deposited in the Kodar-Udokan Rift Basin, and are located within 2 km to the south of the 1.87 Ga Kodar Complex granites (Gongalsky and Krivolutskaya, 2015). The deposit is also within 10 km to the north of the near east-west Kalakan Tectonic Zone that corresponds to the southern margin of the Kodar–Udokan Rift Basin (Sklyarov et al., 2016).

The larger Western Intrusion of the Katugin Complex is 80% buried beneath moraine and relatively less investigated (Starikova et al., 2019). The Eastern Intrusions however, (to 2016) had been tested with >100 drillholes were drilled, multiple trenches and two adits (Sklyarov et al., 2016). In plan, it has a roughly 'tooth shape', with the two roots pointing south, an east west width of near 2 km and maximum north-south dimensions of 1.5 km (Sklyarov et al., 2016; Gladkocub et al., 2017; Starikova et al., 2019). Sklyarov et al., 2016 shows this intrusion in the axis of a SW plunging synformal structure, separated by an ~3 km interval of smaller lensoid intrusions from the Western Intrusion which occupies an east-west elongated area of ~5 x 1.5 km.

The Eastern Intrusion is composed of three types of granitoid corresponding to three phases of magmatism, namely,
Phases I - biotite and biotite-riebeckite, which constitutes the western 'root' and northwestern crown of the 'tooth-shaped' intrusion. These granitoids have moderate or high Al contents and relatively high CaO, but contain the least F;
Phases II - biotite-arfvedsonite, which are supersaturated with respect to alkalis, rich in CaO and Y, but poor in Na
2O and F; and
Phases III - arfvedsonite, aegirine-arfvedsonite and aegirine granites. These granitoids, which have a diverse mineralogy and lack distinct boundaries, are regarded as representing a single phase because the aegirine, aegirine-arfvedsonite and arfvedsonite varieties sometimes grade back and forth from one to another over a few cms. In some locations, some arfvedsonite and aegirine granites appear as isolated pegmatitic veins. Phase III is the ore-bearing intrusions and is supersaturated in alkalis, with high concentrations of Na
2O, F and Al, very low in CaO, but mostly rich in Zr, Hf, Nb and Ta.

Phases II and III form the eastern 'root' and much of the 'crown' of the tooth-shaped intrusion. Most of granites in the Eastern Katugin Intrusion are medium- to fine-grained, often gneissic, leucocratic and mesocratic quartz-albite-microcline granites with variable amounts of melanocratic minerals (Starikova et al., 2019; Gladkocub et al., 2017). However, coarse-grained and even pegmatite-like varieties are also found as crosscutting veins and irregular shape masses with thicknesses of between 0.15 to 3 m (Gladkocub et al., 2017).

Zircon occurs as either sporadic grains or as large clusters (to 20 vol.%) in all rocks of the Eastern Katugin Intrusion. Fluoraluminate minerals include abundant cryolite, which in aegirine granites includes a large (~200 m long by ~10 m in thickness) body on the intrusion margin and distributed as vein-disseminated and ≤3 cm globules/aggregates. Weaker concentration occur in the other phases, present as weberite, chiolite, prosopite, pachnolite, thomsenolite and Ba-fluoraluminates. Ta-Nb-REE mineralisation mainly occurs as pyrochlore, columbite (Fe-Mn-Nb), fluorides e.g., fluocerite (Ce), gagarinite (Y), tveitite (Y), yttrofluorite (Y) and fluorcarbonates e.g., bastnäsite (Ce) and parisite (Ce) or less often monazite (Ce). REE fluorides and fluorcarbonates often form aggregates unevenly distributed in the rocks. Other minerals include ilmenite, magnetite and sulphides including sphalerite, galena and pyrrhotite or pyrite. Ta-Nb-REE-Zr mineralisation formed at 2055±7 Ma, roughly coeval of the Katugin granite which was emplaced at 2066±6 Ma, the difference being within the scope of analytical error (Starikova et al., 2019; Sklyarov et al., 2016).

The host rocks occur as gneiss, schist and migmatite of variable compositions, with a foliation fabric of different extent characteristic to all granitoid types including lineation of biotite or arfvedsonite and aegirine. Sometimes the foliation is only visible on a macroscopic scale. The encompassing country rocks surrounding the intrusion comprise crystalline schist, gneiss, migmatite and blastomylonite after sedimentary protoliths of the Palaeoproterozoic Kodar Group, increasing from biotite, rarer biotite–amphibole gneiss and crystalline schist distal to the contact, grading to proximal migmatite and granitised gneiss (Sklyarov et al., 2016).

The deposit is estimated to contain 2.7 Mt each of Nb and Ta, with grades of 0.026 wt.%Ta
2O5, 0.374 wt.% Nb2O5, 0.16 wt.% Y2O3, 0.22 wt.% REE2O3, 0.0078 wt.% U3O8, 1.62 wt% ZrO2 (Seltmann et al., 2010).

As of 2019 the deposit was being held as a strategic reserve with no plans for development.

The most recent source geological information used to prepare this summary was dated: 2019.    
This description is a summary from published sources, the chief of which are listed below.
© Copyright Porter GeoConsultancy Pty Ltd.   Unauthorised copying, reproduction, storage or dissemination prohibited.

  References & Additional Information
   Selected References:
Gladkocub, D.P., Donskaya, T.V., Sklyarov, E.V., Kotov, A.B., Vladykin, N.V., Pisarevsky, S.A., Larin, A.M., Salnikova, E.B., Saveleva, V.B., Sharygin, V.V., Starikova, A.E., Tolmacheva, E.V., Velikoslavinsky, S.D., Mazukabzov, A.M. and others  2017 - The unique Katugin rare-metal deposit (southern Siberia): Constraints on age and genesis: in    Ore Geology Reviews   v.91, pp. 246-263.
Gongalsky, B. and Krivolutskaya, N.,  2015 - The Nb-Ta-Zr-REE-Y Katugin Deposit: in Gongalsky, B. and Krivolutskaya, N., 2015 World-Class Mineral Deposits of Northeastern Transbaikalia, Siberia, Russia, Modern Approaches in Solid Earth Sciences, Springer, Switzerland,   v.17, Ch. 10, pp. 257-271.
Levashova, E.V., Skublov, S.G., Marin, Yu.B., Lupashko, T.N. and Ilchenko, E.A.,  2015 - Trace Elements in Zircon from Rocks of the Katugin Rare-Metal Deposit: in    Geology of Ore Deposits (Pleiades Publishing)   v.57, pp. 579-590.
Seltmann, R., Soloviev, R., Shatov, V., Pirajno, F., Naumov, E. and Cherkasov, S.,  2010 - Metallogeny of Siberia: tectonic, geologic and metallogenic settings of selected significant deposits: in    Australian J. of Earth Sciences   v.57, pp. 655-706.
Sklyarov, E.V., Gladkochub, D.P., Kotov, A.B., Starikova, A.E., Sharygin, V.V., Velikoslavinsky, S.D., Larin, A.M., Mazukabzov, A.M., Tolmacheva, E.V. and Khromova, E.A.,  2016 - Genesis of the Katugin Rare-Metal Ore Deposit: Magmatism versus Metasomatism: in    Russian Journal of Pacific Geology, Pleiades Publishing, Ltd., (Original Russian text published in Tikhookeanskaya Geologiya, 2016, Vol. 35, No. 3, pp. 9-22),   v.10, pp. 155-167.
Starikova, A.E., Bazarova, E.P., Saveleva, V.B., Sklyarov, E.V., Khromova, E.A. and Kanakin, S.V.,  2019 - Pyrochlore-Group Minerals in the Granite-Hosted Katugin Rare-Metal Deposit, Transbaikalia, Russia: in    Minerals (MDPI)   v.9, 17p. doi:10.3390/min9080490

Porter GeoConsultancy Pty Ltd (PorterGeo) provides access to this database at no charge.   It is largely based on scientific papers and reports in the public domain, and was current when the sources consulted were published.   While PorterGeo endeavour to ensure the information was accurate at the time of compilation and subsequent updating, PorterGeo, its employees and servants:   i). do not warrant, or make any representation regarding the use, or results of the use of the information contained herein as to its correctness, accuracy, currency, or otherwise; and   ii). expressly disclaim all liability or responsibility to any person using the information or conclusions contained herein.

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