Minerals Alert July 2011

A monthly online newsletter with product news, data releases and projects relating to the minerals and energy exploration industry.

1. New 1:250 000 scale geological maps available on the Geoscience Portal

The 1:250 000 scanned geological maps available at the Geoscience Portal have been updated with 70 new scanned maps. They include maps of areas which previously had no coverage as well as some that replace out-of-date editions and some metallogenic maps which contain considerably more recently obtained geological data than previous editions. Areas for which paper maps have not been published are now covered by 1:250 000 scale plots of GIS data.

The scanned maps are available at three resolutions - 75, 125 and 250 dpi - and include the full legend and map surrounds where that information occurs on one sheet. The map images are to scale, but are not georeferenced. Consequently, although they can be plotted to scale, they cannot be used in a digital GIS mapping environment.

For further information, please email oliver.raymond@ga.gov.au; or phone +61 2 6249 9575.

2. Airborne electromagnetic data and inversion models for the Frome Embayment region, South Australia

New airborne electromagnetic (AEM) data and inversion products have been released for the Frome Embayment area in South Australia. The data were acquired using the TEMPESTTM AEM system during 2010 and cover 95 450 square kilometres in 32 317 line kilometres. The survey primarily targeted potential uranium-bearing mineral systems in the Callabonna Sub-basin of the Frome Embayment and the Lake Eyre Basin on the flanks of the northern Flinders Ranges, continuing to Marree and Cameron Corner and included portions of the Curnamona Province and the northwest Murray Basin.

This data release includes new inversions using the Geoscience Australia layered earth inversion (GA-LEI) algorithm and data products, including point-located ASCII data and geo-located grids, sections and images.

The Phase 2 Frome Embayment TEMPESTTM AEM survey final inversion data and conductivity models is available as a free download.

For further information, email ian.roach@ga.gov.au; or phone +61 2 6249 9683.

3. Final Onshore Energy Security Program seismic surveys complete

A deep crustal seismic reflection survey was conducted in May 2011 over the onshore Southern Carnarvon Basin, Western Australia (see figure). This survey imaged the Byro Sub-basin, which is one of Australia's under explored sedimentary basins. The survey consisted of one 259 kilometre line and the data is currently being processed with the aim of release in early 2012.

Yilgarn-Officer-Musgrave Seismic Survey

The Yilgarn-Officer-Musgrave geophysical survey has been acquired. This survey was jointly funded by Geoscience Australia and the Geological Survey of Western Australia. This was the final major seismic survey to be carried out under Geoscience Australia's Onshore Energy Security Program. Deep-crustal reflection seismic, refraction seismic, gravity, and magneto-telluric data were acquired along a 487 kilometre long traverse over the Officer Basin, linking the Yilgarn and Musgrave Cratons (see figure). This survey imaged the western Officer Basin, which is another of Australia's under-explored sedimentary basins with hydrocarbon potential, The survey, which was completed in June, builds on the geological knowledge of Australia's crustal architecture and the relationship of the western Yilgarn and central Musgrave Cratons.

For further information, please email jenny.maher@ga.gov.au; or phone +61 2 6249 9896.

4. New report for Rare-Earth-Element Explorers

Geoscience Australia has released a monograph which describes the distribution, geological characteristics, resources and potential of Australia's major rare-earth-elements (REE) deposits. The review is the first national synthesis of the REE since 1997, and examines those criteria considered important for the formation of REE deposits and suggested exploration guidelines relevant to Australia.

The REE are a group of 17 metals which have unique and strategically important chemical, magnetic and luminescent properties. Their applications in many emerging technologies associated with the transport, information, environment, energy, defence, nuclear and aerospace industries have gained rapid momentum in recent years. Dramatically increasing REE prices reflect this expanding range of applications and a narrow global supply base, making them an increasingly more attractive commodity target for the minerals industry.

The 204-page monograph 'The major rare-earth-element deposits of Australia: geological setting, exploration, and resources', by Dean Hoatson, Subhash Jaireth, and Yanis Miezitis, is available as a free download.

For further information, please email dean.hoatson@ga.gov.au; or phone +61 2 6249 9593.

5. National Geochemical Survey of Australia update

The National Geochemical Survey of Australia (NGSA) project has just completed the first geochemical atlas of Australia based on the multi-element analysis of transported regolith samples collected at the outlet of large catchments covering most of the continent. The project, which commenced in January 2007, was funded under the Onshore Energy Security Program and the geological surveys of all States and the Northern Territory under a collaborative National Geoscience Agreement. Project outputs include:

More information on reports and maps is available through the National Geochemical Survey of Australia Project.

For further information, email patrice.decaritat@ga.gov.au; or phone +61 2 6249 9378.

6. Airborne electromagnetic data and inversion models for the VTEMTM AEM Kombolgie Survey area, Northern Territory

New airborne electromagnetic (AEM) inversion products have been released for the Kombolgie VTEMTM AEM survey area in the Northern Territory. Data have been inverted using the layered Earth inversion algorithm software developed at Geoscience Australia.

The Pine Creek AEM Kombolgie survey covered a total of 8800 line kilometres over an area of 32 000 square kilometres and included mapping of subsurface geological features associated with unconformity-related, sandstone-hosted Westmoreland-type and Vein-type uranium mineralisation. The data are capable also of interpretation for other commodities including metals and potable water as well as for landscape evolution studies. The improved understanding of the regional geology to a depth of greater than 1500 metres resulting from the inversion results will be of considerable benefit to mining and mineral exploration companies.

The Phase 2 Kombolgie VTEM AEM survey final inversion data and conductivity models is available as a free download.

For further information, email ross.brodie@ga.gov.au; or phone +61 2 6249 9607.

7. Update on geophysical data releases

The current status of Geoscience Australia's geophysical survey data acquisition is now available in a comprehensive table.

Minerals Alert Geophysical Surveys Table - survey boundary polygons in MapInfo TAB format.

For further information, email murray.richardson@ga.gov.au; or phone +61 2 6249 9229.

8. About Minerals Alert

For more information, email roger.skirrow@ga.gov.au or phone +61 2 6249 9442.

To read past editions of Geoscience Australia's Minerals Alert, visit the Minerals Alert Newsletter Archive.

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Topic contact: media@ga.gov.au Last updated: October 4, 2013