The study consisted of examining six porphyry copper deposits (Ingerbelle, Copper Mountain, Afton, Lornex, Bethlehem and Brenda Mine), four Precambrian volcanogenic massive sulphide deposits (Millenbach, Mattabi, Geco and Winston Lake), and a syn-sedimentary deposit (Sullivan Mine). The examinations included a petrographic study to determine the titanium minerals and alteration present, an analysis of whole rocks of altered and unaltered equivalents, to determine if titania content fluctuates with alteration, and a microprobe analysis of biotites, a mineral that can contain significant amounts of titanium in its structure.
The porphyry copper deposits related to calc-alkaline intrusions contained rutile produced from the alteration of primary, magmatic biotite. The highly metamorphosed volcanogenic massive sulphide deposits contained ilmenite present in the altered mafic, volcanic flows of related rocks. The ilmenite is formed due to the metamorphism of rutile plus magnetite with the rutile originally forming due to the alteration of titanomagnetites. At the Sullivan mine, the syn-sedimentary deposit studied, rutile of detrital origin is found in the hanging wall sediments. Sphene is present in the albitized hanging wall sediments. The titanium minerals that are present in the different deposit types formed under different conditions and are therefore unrelated genetically.