Greisen is a highly altered granitic rock or pegmatite. Greisen is formed by autogenic alteration of a granite and is a class of endoskarn.

Greisens appear as highly altered rocks, partly coarse, crystalline granite, partly vuggy with miarolitic cavities, disseminated halide minerals such as fluorite, and occasionally metallic oxide and sulfide ore minerals, borate minerals (tourmaline) and accessory phases such as sphene, beryl, topaz, etcetera.


Greisens are formed by endoskarn alteration of granite during the cooling stages of emplacement. Greisen fluids are formed by granites as the last highly gas- and water-rich phases of complete crystalisation of granite melts. This fluid is forced into the interstitial spaces of the granite and pools at the upper margins, where boiling and alteration occur.

Alteration facies

* Incipient greisen (granite): muscovite ± chlorite, tourmaline, and fluorite.
* Greisenized granite: quartz-muscovite-topaz-fluorite, ± tourmaline (original texture of granites retained).
* Massive greisen: quartz-muscovite-topaz ± fluorite ± tourmaline (typically no original texture preserved). Tourmaline can be ubiquitous as disseminations, concentrated or diffuse clots, or late fracture fillings. Greisen may form in any wallrock environment, typical assemblages developed in aluminosilicates.

Greisen environments

Greisens appear to be restricted to intrusions which are emplaced high in the crust, generally at a depth between 0.5 and 5 km, with upper aureoles which are sealed shut to prevent fluids escaping. This is generally required, as the boiling to produce greisenation cannot occur deeper than about 5 kilometres.

They are also generally associated only with potassic igneous rocks; S-type granite, not I-type granodiorite or diorite. Greisens are prospective for mineralisation because the last fluids of granite crystallization tend to concentrate incompatible elements such as potassium, tin, tungsten, molybdenum and fluorine, as well as metals such as gold, silver, and occasionally copper.

Tectonically, greisen granites are generally associated with generation of S-type suites of granites in thick arc and back-arc fold belts where subducted sedimentary and felsic rock is melted.


Typical greisen deposits include
* Tin deposits of Cornwall
* Ardlethan, Lachlan Fold Belt, Australia (tin-antimony greisen)
* Timbarra, Lachlan Fold Belt, Australia (gold greisen deposit)
* Anchor Mine, Tasman Fold Belt, Australia (tin greisen)
* Pitinga topaz granite, Brazil (tin, topaz, beryl)
* Lost River, Alaska, USA (tin greisen)
* Erzgebirge, Czech Republic (tin greisen)

ee also

* List of rock textures
* Metasomatism
* Granite; specifically for S-type and I-type distinction
* Ore genesis

External links

* [ USGS descriptive Sn greisen model]
* [ Lenharo, S.L.R., Pollard P.J., Born H., "Matrix rock texture in the Pitinga Topaz Granite, Amazonas, Brazil", Brazilian Geoscience Reviews, vol 30, 2000 (pdf)]


Evans, A.M., 1993. "Ore Geology and Industrial Minerals, An Introduction.", Blackwell Science, ISBN 0-632-02953-6

Reed, B.L., 1982, "Tin greisen model", in Erickson, R.L., ed., "Characteristics of mineral deposit occurrences: U.S. Geological Survey Open-File Report" 82-795, p. 55-61.

Taylor, R.G., 1979, "Geology of tin deposits": Elsevier, Amsterdam, 543 p.

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Look at other dictionaries:

  • GREISEN — GREISE On appelle greisen une roche métasomatique (métamorphisée avec modification chimique globale de la roche originale), caractérisée par la paragenèse suivante: quartz, micas (muscovite, biotite, zinnwaldite, lépidolite) et, accessoirement,… …   Encyclopédie Universelle

  • greisen — s. n. [pron. germ. grái zăn] Trimis de siveco, 10.08.2004. Sursa: Dicţionar ortografic  GREISÉN s.n. (geol.) Rocă granuloasă, alcătuită din cuarţ şi mică, formată prin transformarea granitului sub acţiunea soluţiilor magmatice reziduale. [pron.… …   Dicționar Român

  • Greisen —   [nach einem sächsischen Bergmannsausdruck] der, / , durch Pneumatolyse weitgehend umgewandeltes granitisches Gestein, in dem die Feldspäte fast völlig durch Quarz, Lithiumglimmer, Topas, Turmalin u. a. verdrängt sind; Greisen enthalten oft… …   Universal-Lexikon

  • Greisen — Greisen, in der Gesteinskunde ein granitartiges, aus Quarz und Glimmer bestehendes, feldspatfreies Gestein, das wahrscheinlich aus Granit entstanden und mit ihm in seinem Auftreten eng verbunden ist. Der Greisen ist körnig, ungeschichtet und… …   Lexikon der gesamten Technik

  • Greisen — Greisen, verb. reg. neutr. welches das Hülfswort haben erfordert, greis werden, besonders von den Haupthaaren. Im Hochdeutschen ist es ungewöhnlich, ungeachtet es im Oberdeutschen selbst in der Dichtersprache nicht selten ist. Swer volget wisen… …   Grammatisch-kritisches Wörterbuch der Hochdeutschen Mundart

  • Greisen — Grei sen, n. (Min.) A crystalline rock consisting of quarts and mica, common in the tin regions of Cornwall and Saxony. [1913 Webster] …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • Greisen — Greisen, kristallinisches Gestein, das aus einem in der Regel grobkörnigen Gemenge von hellgrauem Quarz und graugrünem oder gelbem Glimmer (meist Lithionglimmer) besteht. Bald als akzessorischer Bestandteil, bald in Lagen und Gängen kommt… …   Meyers Großes Konversations-Lexikon

  • Greisen — Greisen, körniges graues Gestein, Gemenge von Quarz und Glimmer, gewöhnlich zinnerzhaltig …   Kleines Konversations-Lexikon

  • greisen — [grī′zən] n. [Ger, var. of greiss < dial. greissen, to split] a crystalline, igneous rock consisting mainly of quartz and white mica …   English World dictionary

  • Greisen — Der Greisen ist ein Begriff aus der sächsischen Bergmannssprache und steht für körnige, meist graue Gesteine, die hauptsächlich aus Quarz bestehen und oft eng mit Zwittern verbunden sind. Innerhalb der Greisen unterscheidet man zwischen Glimmer… …   Deutsch Wikipedia

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