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Project Overview

Project Number
M0514
Total Grant Value
$290,000
MRIWA Contribution
$100,000
Project Theme
Detection Technology
Project Period
2018 - 2020

The Challenge

Salt lakes represent highly prospective environments for mineral exploration, but deploying conventional seismic surveying technology in hyper-saline environments is challenging, inefficient and often leads to a permanent damage of expensive electronic equipment.

The Solution

Distributed Acoustic Sensing (DAS) technology utilises fibre optic cables as continuous high-density seismic receivers, which could circumvent the challenges experienced by electronic recording systems in harsh hyper-saline conditions. This project will evaluate the potential of DAS as an exploration tool through a program of borehole testing and field experiments at the hyper saline Lake Carey in Western Australia.

Proposed Benefits to WA

DAS technology could reduce the cost of seismic reflection surveys in hyper-saline conditions by an order of magnitude, delivering a cost-effective methods for imaging complex underground structures in these hostile environments. This efficiency gain would support mineral exploration in highly prospective but under-explored salt lake regions across Western Australia.

Extremely challenging and highly prospective hyper-saline lake environment of WA remains underexplored due to lack of resources but also due to lack of adequate geophysical methodologies. We are hopeful that new low cost DAS technology will enable a step change in the application of seismic reflection of WA.

Keywords: hypersaline, mineral exploration, seismic

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Page was last reviewed 30 October 2020

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