The Cerro Quema Project occurs within an elongate belt of late Cretaceous island-arc plutonic and volcanic rocks composed of granodiorites-qtz diorites and dacitic-andesitic pyroclastic/flow rocks. This belt extends WNW-ESE for over 150 kilometers from the central Sona Peninsula to the southeastern tip of the Azuero Peninsula. The majority of known gold and copper-gold prospects located in the Peninsula are found within this volcanic belt that is host to numerous areas of acid leach alteration associated with high sulphidation, epithermal gold (copper) mineralization.
The gold deposits of La Pava and Quemita, and the gold prospects of Idaida, Caballito and Pelona have outcropping residual quartz with advanced argillic alteration halos that occur along 12 km of topographic highs (ridges). The enveloping advanced argillic minerals at Cerro Quema include alunite, pyrophyllite, diaspore, dickite, and kaolinite. The principle style of quartz-rich alteration in drill core and outcrops at the Cerro Quema Project is vuggy quartz (silicic). Most of this residual quartz occurs as silicic alteration and replacement of dacitic flows and pyroclasitcs proximal to dacite dome(s), and as fragments within hydrothermal breccias within feeder structures.
Gold occurs as disseminated submicroscopic grains in the silicic alteration zone. Intense weathering (supergene) has resulted in the formation of an oxide leached cap or gossan that extends from surface to depths up to 150 m containing gold in iron oxides. The highest grades of gold mineralization occur within crackled and brecciated high level feeder structrures containing abundant iron oxides (jarosite-goethite-hematite) after sulfides (pyrite-enargite-chalcopyrite). Gold surface enrichment occurs in these outcropping structures, most noted on the southern margin of the La Pava deposit.
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