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Western Australia

The WA_In3D project will spearhead advances in 3D modelling algorithms and workflows which will allow us to reduce geological risk by building models that are constrained by the complete geological database.  This capability will improve our current models, and will also provide us with a vastly expanded predicative capacity.  We will achieve this by developing effective methodologies for integrated inversion, which considers uncertainties in various exploration datasets using geological misfit functions. It will then allow us to use sensitivity analyses on the models to prioritise exploration targets for future data acquisition, which will further reduce exploration risk.

The WA_In3D program addresses key geoscience challenges by maximising the exploration value of existing geoscience datasets and creating new inversion-based models at the scale of the whole of the state. The fundamental goal of understanding the 3D geology of a greenfields terrain is to minimise and characterise exploration risk in 3D.

This research program will minimise risk by developing algorithms and workflows that quite simply allow us to build better-constrained 3D models. This will be achieved by the outcomes of Work Package 1 (WP1 Reducing Risk in 3D Geological Model Building)) and WP2 (Reducing Risk via integrated 3D Geophysical Inversion). In WP3 (Characterising Risk via analysis of Geodiversity, Ambiguity and Sensitivity) we will better characterise risk by implementing methodologies that allow us to understand the ambiguity and diversity of possible models.

Finally in WP 4 (Application, Training & Outreach) we will apply these new algorithms and workflows to real-world examples, both to validate our systems, and to provide the first of a new suite of cross-validated 3D model across Western Australia. These models will form the roadmaps for mineral explorers to detect the footprints of undiscovered mineralised systems. They will also underpin land use decisions (groundwater, recreation, waste management) for the state well into the future, ensuring such decisions are based on soundest scientific understanding of what lies beneath.