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Queensland, Qld, Australia
Main commodities: Cu Zn Pb Ag Au

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The Liontown copper-gold-silver-lead-zinc orebodies are hosted by the Cambro-Ordovician Mount Windsor Volcanics some 32 km southwest of Charters Towers in north Queensland, Australia.

The Mount Windsor volcanic and sedimentary sequence forms a 165 km long east-west trending volcano-sedimentary belt from Ravenswood in the east to near Pentland in the west.   It has been extensively intruded by the Ordovician to Permian composite Ravenswood Batholith and Lolworth Igneous Complex along its northern margin, and is overlain to the south by the extensive Tertiary alluvials and ferricretes of the Campaspe Beds.

The Mt Windsor Volcanics belong the the Seventy Mile Range Group which commences with a 9 km thickness of Cambrian mixed volcanics and sediments dominated by continental-derived quartz and lithic rich sandstone, greywacke and siltstone.   These are overlain by the 300 to 3500 m thick Cambrian Mount Windsor Formation comprising a sequence of rhyolitic volcanics with minor dacite and rare andesite, while sediments are only found at the base.   The Mt Windsor Formation passes conformably upwards into the 500 to 4000 m thick Trooper Creek Formation made up of basaltic, andesitic, dacitic and rhyolitic lavas, intrusions and volcaniclastics, laminated siltstones and mudstones with local graptolites, calcareous meta-sediments, rare microbialites and thin iron stones.

The Trooper Creek Formation in turn passes up into the Ordovician Rollston Range Formation, the base of which is marked by the uppermost stratigraphic interval dominated by syneruptive volcaniclastics units and/or rhyolitic to basaltics lavas and synsedimentary intrusives. The Rollston Range Formation is a suite of volcanic and non-volcanic sediments up to 1 km thick.

The ore zones of the Liontown deposit are found at the contact between the Trooper Creek Formation volcanics and the overlying Rollston Formation, within a sequence of east-west striking cherty sediments that overlie quartz-sericite schist altered rhyolitic volcanics.   These rocks face and dip steeply to the south and are overlain by a hangingwall of unaltered siltstone, shale, arenite and crystal rich dacite.

Three styles of mineralisation are recognised, namely:  1). Finely banded, discontinuous thin lenses of semi-massive sphalerite with minor galena, chalcopyrite and pyrite with abundant intermixed barite and carbonate hosted by cherty sediments, forming the top of the mineralised sequence,  2). Semi-massive to massive sphalerite-galena ± chalcopyrite-pyrite pods replacing sheared and intense chlorite-sericite altered dacite tuff in the volcanics below the previously described ore type, and  3). Copper-gold rich stringer quartz veins within the footwall rhyolites forming the stratigraphically lowest of the ore styles.

The footwall alteration comprises extensive sericitisation and patchy pervasive fine grained milky quartz, with common disseminated carbonate and pale sphalerite.

Historically, chalcopyrite rich primary ores were worked below copper leached, gold rich surface ores over a strike length of 360 m and to a depth of 200 m, over widths of up to 3 m.

Historic production + inferred resources at Liontown are estimated to be:
    2 Mt @ 0.5% Cu, 6.6% Zn, 2.3% Pb, 50 g/t Ag, 0.9 g/t Au (Berry, et al., 1992).

Remaining resources in 2012 (Kagara Mining, 2012) were:
    Inferred Oxide ore - 0.205 Mt @ 7.4% Zn, 3.1% Pb, 1.1% Cu, 1.0 g/t Au, 31 g/t Ag;
    Indicated sulphide ore - 0.730 Mt @ 7.3% Zn, 2.2% Pb, 0.5% Cu, 0.3 g/t Au, 28 g/t Ag;
    Inferred sulphide ore - 0.910 Mt @ 7.6% Zn, 3.1% Pb, 1.1% Cu, 1.0 g/t Au, 31 g/t Ag;
    TOTAL tonnage of ore - 1.845 Mt.

Remaining Ore Reserves and Mineral Resources at Waterloo at 30 June, 2020 were (Red River Resources Website, viewed May 2021):
    Measured + Indicated + Inferred Mineral Resources - 4.138 Mt @ 5.9% Zn, 1.9% Pb, 0.6% Cu, 1.1 g/t Au, 29 g/t Ag

Red River Resources plans to treat Liontown Ore at their Thalanga operation.

For detail see the reference(s) listed below.

The most recent source geological information used to prepare this decription was dated: 1992.     Record last updated: 24/6/2013
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:
Beams, S.D., Bates, T.,Huston, D.L. and Morrison, I.J.,  2017 - Polymetallic massive sulfide deposits of the Mount Windsor Subprovince: in Phillips, G.N., (Ed.), 2017 Australian Ore Deposits, The Australasian Institute of Mining and Metallurgy,   Mono 32, pp. 689-692
Berry R F, Huston D L, Stolz A J, Hill A P, Beams S D, Kuronen U, Taube A  1992 - Stratigraphy, structure, and volcanic-hosted mineralization of the Mount Windsor Subprovince, North Queensland, Australia: in    Econ. Geol.   v87 pp 739-763
Large R R  1992 - Australian volcanic-hosted massive sulfide deposits: features, styles, and genetic models: in    Econ. Geol.   v87 pp 471-510

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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