The conference and workshops will commence on Wednesday 19 April 2017. A welcome reception will be held in the evening of Tuesday 18 April 2017. The conference dinner will be held in the University Club on Thursday 20 April 2017 at an additional cost. The conference will conclude on Friday 21 April 2017 and workshops will conclude on Saturday 22 April 2017.
In this session we invite presentations highlighting scientific advances and futuristic views on exploration targeting. Such advances should address the ever-increasing demand for the finite resources of the Earth. Themes may include science and innovation, futuristic exploration strategies, automated exploration techniques and simulators, and the role of training and pre-competitive data for future exploration challenges.
Following the discovery of near-surface resources, the decrease in successful mineral exploration may be due to the difficulty of exploring beneath post-mineralisation sedimentary basins and regolith that cover a large part of exploration search space. In this session, we encourage the presentation of case studies showing how real-time data acquisition is pertinent to exploration undercover. This includes, but is not limited to, deep exploration technologies, geophysical and remote sensing techniques, data analytics techniques and geological data integration.
Exploration targeting is a sequential volume reduction exercise that requires multi-scale analysis from regional scale, district or camp scale, to the prospect scale. Furthermore, it is used down to the scale of ore shoot definition within a deposit. This scale dependence dramatically impacts large targeting models used in the industry. In this session we invite communication of the challenges associated with targeting across various scales, from lithospheric to prospect scale including case studies.
Mineral systems analysis provides a theoretical framework that supports exploration. It relies on the understanding that ore deposits are small expressions of much larger earth processes that operate on a variety of scales to focus mass and energy flux. Beyond the conceptual presentation of the mineral systems approach, all presentations relating its application will be welcome in this session. Case studies may include: large to small scale mineral systems analysis, their translation through to prospectivity models and mapping, big data mining for exploration, and multidisciplinary data integration.
Lithospheric scale structures are often presented as a first order control on the location of mineralised camps. However, these structures tend to be difficult to recognize in traditional surface geologic mapping and often require acquisition of regional scale geophysical datasets (e.g. gravity, magnetic, magnetotelluric, or seismic data) and/or spatial and temporal mapping of isotopic geochemical gradients (e.g. Lu-Hf). This session will include case studies illustrating how lithospheric scale analysis can be, or has been successfully applied to minerals exploration.
District scale exploration requires a serious commitment of resources from explorers, in terms of time, people and money. However, predicting the location of mineralized camps is impeded at this scale by a lack of direct detection technologies, and conceptual targeting often drives the initial work. Where direct detection technologies (soil geochemistry grids, induced polarisation (IP), electromagnetic surveys (EM), detailed aero-magnetics or ground magnetic surveys, and detailed ground gravity) are applied they can often be associated with large false positive rates. Presentations involving case studies and exploration strategies, both conceptual and practical within a district scale (c. 100km2 area) are invited in this session.
Both predictive technologies and direct detection techniques are used at the prospect scale. Where direct detection techniques could include soil and whole rock geochemistry, hyperspectral analysis, electrical geophysics, downhole EM or IP. These sorts of methods may or may not vector to mineralisation and their alteration haloes. This session welcomes presentations documenting techniques that may aid in targeting ore bodies or their associated alteration footprints, as well as advances in near mine exploration.
With increasing data volume and diversity, the role of data science, computational modelling and machine learning are becoming critical to better evaluate the complexities of geological systems. This session welcomes all case studies showing how understanding and utilising ‘big data’, modelling (3D, geodynamic and complex systems) and machine learning are key to supporting mineral exploration and targeting.
Given the long lead-time between ore deposit discovery and mining the mineral exploration community holds a tremendous responsibility in exploring for quality world class deposits in Greenfield’s districts. However, most exploration companies focus on near mine and brownfields mineral districts. This is due to the perception that these scenarios reduce risk that is they are more likely to find another deposit in regions known to be well endowed in good quality deposits. This session will focus on the business case supporting Greenfield’s exploration strategies including, but not limited to long term mineral production and revenue predictions, finding mines not mineralisation, risk evaluation and crowdfunding for exploration.
Note: Please be advised that this is a provisional program and is subject to change.