Jump to Search Jump to Navigation Jump to Content

4D evolution of the Telfer deposit, W.A.

Telfer, Western Australia

This project is assessing the controls on, and significance of, spatial variations in the character and grade of mineralisation within the giant copper-gold system at Telfer in the Patterson Orogen, W.A. 

We are integrating structural, metamorphic and alteration histories to produce a 4D reconstruction of the deposit, underpinned by enhanced geochronological constraint of mineralisation episodes. This understanding is also being used to place the evolution of the mineralised systems within a wider regional context, with the intention of using a mineral systems approach to aid exploration targeting.

Dr Geoffrey Batt is leading structural and tectonic aspects of the project, incorporating 3D modelling of deposit structure and geology with targeted mapping on-site, supported by petrographic analysis of select samples, and spectral analysis of mineralogical fingerprints associated with alteration and ore mineralisation. This work is directed at developing an enhanced understanding of paragenetic history, and defining the characteristic signatures and spatial footprints of various mineralised elements within the system. The geological insight developed through this research programme is also being used to frame geophysical inversions developed by adjunct researcher Dr. Luis Gallardo to explore the regional geological context of the Telfer deposit and inform future exploration targeting strategies. Ph.D. student Christian Schindler is working in parallel to this programme on the role of intrusive rocks in the Telfer mineralisation and their importance in exploration targeting. This work includes applying stable and radiogenic isotope analysis to resolve the nature and timing of intrusive rocks throughout the district, together with constraining the source and pressure-temperature-compositional (P-T-X) evolution of ore fluid(s) involved in the generation of the mineralised system. Christian will also be undertaking dating of intrusive phases and Telfer mineralisation to independently establish temporal relationships between these aspects of the system.