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Geoscience Society

Webinar: Redefining the Search Space for Giant ‘McArthur-type’ Sediment Hosted Zn-Pb Deposits

PD Hours
The processes that led to the formation of the largest zinc-lead-silver deposits in the world (clastic sediment-hosted) have been debated for decades, with proponents for both subsurface/epigenetic and synsedimentary exhalative models.

About this event

This depositional event can be attributed to, in part, by the lack of understanding of many of the key features of these mineral systems, such as their unique characteristic trace element signatures, and where they fit in the orebody paragenetic sequence. Until these ore forming processes are adequately understood, the exploration target space remains uncertain, which is problematic as we move into terranes masked by ever deeper cover.

This seminar highlights the findings of one of the recent CSIRO projects in the Carpentaria Zinc Belt (McArthur River/HYC) that utilized some ground-breaking new microanalytical technology, and for the first time mapped out the trace element deportment on drill core-scale samples at micron-scale resolution.

By combining new microanalyses with deposit-wide textural analyses, nano-scale focussed analyses, basin-scale sequence stratigraphy, geophysical modelling and thermodynamic modelling of ore fluids, we present a robust model for subsurface carbonate replacement-driven ore formation.

The audience will not only hear about how this refined model for ore formation and its key features (e.g. geochemical anomalies) can help redefine the exploration space for massive Zn-Pb deposits, but also how this systematic approach in poorly understood systems can unravel complex mineral systems in general.


Dr Mark Pearce

PhD MGeol
Dr Mark Pearce is a geologist who uses multiscale characterisation techniques to study ore-forming processes and understand mineral deposit footprints. He completed a MGeol in Geological Sciences at University and Leeds and PhD in Structural and Metamorphic Geology at University of Liverpool in the UK. In 2012 Mark started a postdoc at CSIRO in Perth examining mineral replacement reactions in gold deposits. Since then he has applied is knowledge of micro and nano-scale processes in geological materials to mineral exploration using a combination of core-scale scanning techniques, conventional microbeam analysis and novel instruments built by CSIRO. Mark currently leads the Ore Body Geoscience Research Group within CSIRO Mineral Resources, a team of 22 geoscientists, physicists, engineers and data scientists all focused on developing better understanding of ore deposits to aid exploration and improve down stream performance of Australia’s ore bodies.

Date and Time

Friday, 30 July 2021
2.00pm – 3.00pm (UTC+10:00)


AusIMM Member $0.00
Non Member $30.00
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