Integrated 3G geochronology-geochemistry-grain shape: A new toolkit for mineral sands understanding
Total Grant Value
With models of mineral sand deposit genesis remaining largely unchanged for decades a lack of new globally significant discoveries, and decline in economic return from mineral sands in Australia in recent years, a different approach is required for defining new exploration spaces.
Application of new and integrated single-grain geochemical fingerprinting approaches to illuminate previously enigmatic aspects of detrital grain histories (e.g. zircon, rutile, apatite) and draw out the importance of shared traits among world-class mineral sand deposits and thus decipher controls of heavy mineral sands systems more broadly.
Combined with this is a new technique based on the utilisation of rapid, low-cost grain shape analysis to resolve the ultimate sources of component heavy minerals (via specific chemistry/ temperature conditions) as well as their transport histories.
Proposed Benefit to WA
- Development of new WA-based techniques and expertise for the mineral sand industry.
- Facilitation of cheaper, faster and highly diagnostic mineral provenance and grain transport history reconstruction which can be used to explore for new deposits.
Other Projects in Program Area
Page was last reviewed 15 July 2020