A review of problems and challenges in the resource estimation of high nugget-effect lode-gold deposits

Dominy, S.C., Annels, A., Platten, I.M., and Raine, M.D. (2003) A review of problems and challenges in the resource estimation of high nugget-effect lode-gold deposits. In: Proceedings of the 5th International Mining Geology Conference, pp. 279-298. From: 5th International Mining Geology Conference, 17-19 Nov 2003, Bendigo, Victoria.

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Abstract

Lode-gold systems are often characterised by a high to extreme nugget effect (>50 per cent), and the presence of coarse gold particles (> IOO μm in size). They rank an1ongst the most difficult of ore deposits types, in terms of producing an accurate and precise resource estin1ate. Their effective sampling is generally difficult because of the relatively low concentrations involved and erratic nature of the gold particles. Grade continuity is usually less consistent than gross geological continuity, and is typified by the localisation of grades within discrete oreshoots. In most cases drilling, particularly diamond drilling is an effective measure of global geological continuity, whereas grade can only be reliably resolved from underground development. Depending upon drill density and geology, it is unlikely that anything above an Inferred Mineral Resource can be estimated fron1 surface drilling alone. Underground development, in-fill drilling and, potentially, bulk sampling or trial mining will be required to delineate Indicated and Measured Mineral Resources and subsequent Ore Reserves. Grade estimation will have to account fo r highly skewed and often multi-modal populations, extreme values, a high nugget effect and low geostatistical ranges. A clear geological model that honours both geological and grade continuity must drive the resource estin1ation process.

Item ID: 14700
Item Type: Conference Item (Refereed Research Paper - E1)
Date Deposited: 18 Sep 2017 01:39
FoR Codes: 04 EARTH SCIENCES > 0403 Geology > 040307 Ore Deposit Petrology @ 100%
SEO Codes: 84 MINERAL RESOURCES (excl. Energy Resources) > 8401 Mineral Exploration > 840105 Precious (Noble) Metal Ore Exploration @ 100%
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