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Galena, Sphalerite and Chalcopyrite: lead and zinc ore minerals

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Double colour image of brown rock mottled with white and yellow
Galena, Sphalerite and Chalcopyrite: lead and zinc ore minerals. Ordovician. Brunswick Mines, New Brunswick. Collector: W. Luff. New Brunswick Museum (NBME 1016). Specimen width 10 cm. The primary ore minerals in the Brunswick Mines deposit are galena (lead sulphide), sphalerite (zinc sulphide), and chalcopyrite (copper, iron sulphide). These formations are typically called ‘volcanogenic massive sulphide’ deposits or VMS. They typically form in deep ocean environments where sulfide minerals precipitate from hydrothermal (hot) fluids on the seafloor. They are associated with undersea volcanoes along mid-ocean ridges or back-arc basins in subduction zones.