The CMXUC is a new research initiative and is currently building its student profile. A range of projects, most of which require a multidisciplinary approach are being offered to potential and current students.
Potential PhD Projects
3D imaging of lithospheric architecture and mineral systems in the eastern Gawler Craton (South Australia).
Using magnetotellurics (MT), seismic reflection and potential field geophysics the aim of this project is to delineate the lithospheric-scale mineral system responsible for the formation of giant Iron oxide Cu-Au deposits on the Gawler Craton, from their source to their site of deposition. This project is part of a pending ARC Linkage grant in collaboration with BHP Billiton and Teck Cominco. Up to two PhD projects are available.
3D structure and stratigraphy of the Gawler Range Volcanics (South Australia).
This project will use newly aquired, detailed gravity and magnetic data, combined with analysis of drill core to reconstruct the internal stratigraphy and basement architecture of the 1.6 billion year old Gawler Range Volcanic Event - one of the most voluminous (dominantly) felsic volcanic events ever recorded on the planet. This will provide important clues regarding the nature and tectonic setting of the magmatic event and its associated mineral deposits - some of which may lie buried (and undiscovered) beneath the Gawler Range Volcanics. The project is a collaboration with Primary Industries and Resources, South Australia (PIRSA).
Supervisor: Professor David Giles
Landscape evolution and Uranium distribution in time and space, northern Flinders Ranges (South Australia).
This project will address the sources, transport mechanisms and tectonic controls on uranium mobility, from 1.6 billion years ago to the present, in one of the most U-rich portions of crust on the planet. The project will focus both on the primary mechanism for U-enrichment in 1.6 billion year old 'hot' granites (largely a geochemical problem) and on the behaviour of uranium through successive cycles of reworking and mobilisation (linking tectonics and landscape evolution). The project is a collaboration with Heathgate Resources.
Potential Honours Projects
Using state of the art reconstruction and laboratory techniques, this project aims to better constrain the tectonic evolution of the northern edge of the Amadeus basin, particulary in the Ormiston Gorge area.
The aim of this project is to make a 3D model of the buried Proterozoic geology of the Oodnadatta region. It will involve analysis of potential data (detailed magnetics and gravity collected by Barrick), collection of geological and petrophysical data from drill core and fieldwork in the Peake and Dension inliers. A 3D model will be constructed using a combination of forward modelling, a range of inversion techniques and geologic information.
Two projects are potentially available to Honours Students.
The aim of this project is to determine the geophysical response and hydrothermmal processes responsible of different types of mineralisation that occur within the Prominent Hill ore body and its satellite deposits. Previous work at Prominent Hill has shown that different mineralisation types (ie gold only, copper-gold, grade variations) are related to different styles of hematite or magetite alteration. These alteration styles should have characteristic signatures in magnetic and gravity datasets -with clear exploration implications.
The aim of this project is to characterise alteration as a function of distance from the ore body, with a view to developing a vector tool for mineral exploration. Preliminary multi-element geochemistry indicates a first order Na enrichment in the vicinity of the ore body, but as yet the nature and scale of enrichment or the geochemical/mineralogical processes involved are unclear.