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Scientific Investigations Report 2012–5058

Integration of New Geologic Mapping and Satellite-Derived Quartz Mapping Yields Insights into the Structure of the Roberts Mountains Allochthon Applicable to Assessments for Concealed Carlin-Type Gold Deposits

By Christopher S. Holm-Denoma, Albert H. Hofstra, Barnaby W. Rockwell, and Paula J. Noble

Thumbnail of and link to report PDF (4.52 MB) Abstract

Geologic mapping and remote sensing across north-central Nevada enable recognition of a thick sheet of Middle and Upper Ordovician Valmy Formation quartzite that structurally overlies folded and faulted Ordovician through Devonian stratigraphic units of the Roberts Mountains allochthon.

In the northern Independence Mountains and nearby Double Mountain area, the Valmy Formation is in fault contact with Ordovician through Silurian, predominantly clastic, sedimentary rocks of the Roberts Mountains allochthon that were deformed prior to, or during, emplacement of the Valmy thrust sheet. Similar structural relations are recognized discontinuously for 200 kilometers along the strike of the Roberts Mountains allochthon in mapping guided by regional remote-sensing-based (ASTER) quartz maps.

Overall thicknesses of deformed Roberts Mountains allochthon units between the base of the Valmy and the top of underlying carbonate rocks that host large Carlin-type gold deposits varies on the order of hundreds of meters but is not known to exceed 700 meters. The base of the Valmy thrust sheet is a complimentary datum in natural resource exploration and mineral resource assessment for concealed Carlin-type gold deposits.

First posted April 12, 2012

For additional information contact:
USGS Central Mineral and Environmental Resources Science Center
Box 25046, MS-973
Denver Federal Center
Denver, CO 80225

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Suggested citation:

Holm-Denoma, C.S., Hofstra, A.H., Rockwell, B.W., and Noble, P.J., 2012, Integration of new geologic mapping and satellite-derived quartz mapping yields insights into the structure of the Roberts Mountains allochthon applicable to assessments for concealed Carlin-type gold deposits: U.S. Geological Survey Scientific Investigations Report 2012–5058, 5 p.




Geologic Background

Remote Sensing (ASTER) Quartz Mapping

Exploration for Concealed Gold Deposits



References Cited

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