Mineralisation in the Onshore Expression of the Hunter Fracture Zone, SouthEastern Viti Levu, Fiji

Organization: The Australasian Institute of Mining and Metallurgy
Pages: 11
Publication Date: Jan 1, 1987
The Hunter Fracture Zone can be traced into the Fiji group, and onshore SE Viti Levu in the form of NE-trending morphostructures. NW- trending morphostructures offset the NE elements. Structural mapping of Suva Harbour indicates that the NE elements are grabens bordered by faulted monoclines. Faulting is characterised by block-rotations and dip-slip displacements. The NW morphostructures are faults displaying elements of both dip-slip and strike-slip movement. Structural overprinting suggests that the NW faults represent the youngest phase of deformation, and current seismic activity occurs on this trend. A conceptual, geomechanical model of the deformation invokes toppling and wedge failure at the edge of the Fiji platform, translating material downslope into the Hunter Fracture Zone. The interference pattern produced by the superposition of the NW on the NE structures consists of a series of circular features bearing superficial resemblance to volcanic centres. Known mineral deposits in SE Viti Levu correspond closely to these features. The formation of the circular features postdates mineral genesis, suggesting that the features provide a focus for the enhanced exposure of mineral deposits rather than a source of mineralisation. There is a close association between mineralised exposures and interference patterns in extensional structures in SE Viti Levu, and a correlation between these structures onshore, and the Hunter Fracture Zone cum South New Hebrides Trench offshore. Future mineral exploration in the SW Pacific will benefit by closer consideration of the geologic structure of Pacific islands bordering the extensional regimes of deep oceanic trenches.
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