Prospectivity analysis using a mineral systems approach - Capricorn case study project (RP04-063-M436)



Opening up greenfields regions for minerals exploration programs is best facilitated through the understanding of regional minerals prospectivity. The Capricorn Orogen is a greenfields region, in which a multicommodity mineral systems analysis has been completed forming the basis of prospectivity analyses and mapping data included in this collection. Known mineral occurrences or deposits in the region formed from between the Paleoproterozoic and Neoproterozoic. Mineralisation can in related to basin development and orogenesis in the region, related to periods of supercontinent assembly and breakup that were manifested in the region through the contractional 2005 – 1950 Ma Glenburgh, 1830 –1780 Ma Capricorn, and c. 900 Ma Edmundian orogenies. These periods were preceded, and interspersed with periods of extension that may have included the 1680–1620 Mangaroon Orogeny, and led to the development of volcanosedimentary and sedimentary basins throughout the region. Prospectivity models were generated for several commodity groups of various ages and ore genesis mechanisms within the region that include combinations of Ni, Cu, PGEs, V, Ti, Au, Pb, Zn, channel Fe and U. The work has found a link between key mineral systems and a spatial relationship between disparate styles of mineral deposits in the region. Crustal-scale tectonic architecture was analysed by allying a 2D map view geological-geophysical interpretation with 2.5D magnetic and gravity joint inversions of selected profiles, a 3D Moho gravity inversion (MoGGIE), and inferences derived from 2D and 3D magnetotellurics and 2D reflection seismic and 3D passive seismic experiment conducted in the region. This work clearly illustrates different ‘zones’ of the Capricorn Orogen are prospective for diverse commodity groups due to the tectonic environment in which they developed through time. Major crustal-scale faults or shear zones that intrinsically control the location of known ore deposits in the area, are implied to be sites of fluid migration and proximal to sites of ore deposition. Of these, some are considered to be Archean in their origin, whereas others are thought to have developed during the early Paleoproterozoic and been re-activated through time, influence the formation of basins over them and perhaps the formation of ore deposits.
Date made available2 Aug 2019
PublisherCSIRO Publishing
Date of data production1 Jan 2014 - 31 Jan 2018

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