Novel seismic methodologies for exploration of mineral resources in a hypersaline environment
Total Grant Value
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.
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
Page was last reviewed 30 October 2020