The principal objective of the project is to develop a robust exploration model for gold and precious metal deposits in the western Iberian Peninsula which unifies the geochemical, isotopic and structural characteristics of stratabound and vein type mineralization.
It is intended that the results of this multidisciplinary approach be compiled as an interactive computer database to allow better appraisal of surface geochemical anomalies detected by conventional exploration techniques. Furthermore, the integrated geochemical and structural data will be used to test new exploration strategies for the Iberian Hercynides based on a more rigorously constrained understanding of the timing of mineralization, chemistry of the ore fluids and controls of mineral deposition.
Development of a generalised model for gold mineralization in Iberian black shale and flysch terrains has significant economic implications for other areas of the world with similar geological conditions, notably France, Czechoslovakia, Turkey, Peru, Ecuador, United States, Canada, Malaysia and Australasia.
The investigations will be carried out in a 250 km long belt of lower Palaeozoic and Precambriam sediments, metavolcanics and granites, coextensive with the Coimbra-Badajoz Shear Zone. The terrain is geochemically anomalous for gold. It contains black shale hosted, vein type gold deposits in Portugal and Spain, as well as recently discovered strata controlled gold mineralization associated with volcaniclastics in the Albuquerque area (Europa Minerals). Detailed geological and structural mapping of a limited number of different mineralized areas within this belt, together with supporting diamond drill and geophysical information, will provide the necessary framework for complementary geochemical studies.
Although most of the investigations will be carried out contemporaneously, the work programme can be roughly structured into 3 phases. In the initial phase of the programme, all partners will carry out field programmes which will comprise geological mapping and geochemical sampling to provide basic data for subsequent investigations. The initial mapping and sampling phase will gradually develop into the second phase which consists of intense laboratory work (geochemical analyses, mineralogical and petrological investigations, remote sensing image processing). Mapping and lithogeochemical sampling will continue throughout this phase. For the final phase, emphasis will shift to detailed geological mapping (plus diamond drilling by Europa Minerals and related lithogeochemical analyses). This phase will overlap with the second phase.
Funding SchemeCSC - Cost-sharing contracts
SW1X 7HJ London
NG12 5GG Keyworth,nottingham
NG12 5GG Nottingham