Exhuming ore deposits of the Altai (China, Mongolia)

Ore deposits Chinese Altai

Ore deposits Chinese Altai

This project will apply multi-method apatite thermochronology and calcite dating to constrain the timing of formation and exhumation of the Altai ore provinces.

This approach involves extensive laboratory work and will likely lead to a scientific paper.

The Altai (which means 'gold mountain' in Mongolian) forms part of the Central Asian Orogenic Belt and is located within southern Russia, northwestern China (Xinjiang) and western Mongolia.

This orogenic belt formed during several discrete events of mountain building during the late Palaeozoic – Cenozoic, leading to intense regional metamorphism, granitoid emplacement, compressional deformation and the development and exhumation of abundant Central Asian ore deposits, such as the orogenic gold deposits in Muruntau (Uzbekistan, 170M oz) and Kumtor (Kyrgyzstan, 10M oz).

Within the Altai, three zones (or provinces) of different types of ore deposits can be differentiated that are separated from each other by the Irtysh fault zone (see figure). It is therefore thought that the formation and especially the exhumation of the ore deposits is largely controlled by this fault system.

This project is funded by the Australian Research Council.

Prerequisites:

  • Completed the geology major with a credit average, but most importantly, enthusiasm for research in tectonics.
  • This project would suit someone with ambitions for postgraduate studies; and/or someone pursuing a career in mineral exploration.

Tagged in Honours projects - Geology, Honours Projects - Stijn Glorie, Honours Projects - Alan Collins