MEGWA: November 2017

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Date(s) - 15/11/2017
5:30 pm

Irish Club of WA - Subiaco


MEGWA November 2017



15th November, 2017
5.30pm drinks 6.00pm Presentation


Irish Club of WA
21 Townshend Rd, Subiaco WA


Low Level Field Analysis of Gold

Mel Lintern, CSIRO, Perth

To analyse gold in the field at concentration levels demanded by mineral exploration, and in a practical manner, has not been achievable.  Portable X-Ray Fluorescence (pXRF) was a game changer for explorers when it became available about a decade ago. However, whereas pXRF can analyse for metals such as Cu, Zn, As and Fe at concentration levels relevant to mineral exploration, it can only reasonably analyse for gold above 10 ppm and only then when interfering elements are absent.  Here we present new patented detectORE technology, developed by CSIRO, that can analyse gold using a pXRF at four orders of magnitude lower, at 1-10 ppb concentrations.  The method has been tested against certified reference materials and whilst not a “total” gold method like fire assay or neutron activation analysis, it provides the mineral explorer with crucial information in the field.  Having data available during the execution of a soil sampling or drilling program allows the geologist to make decisions on where to sample next “on-the-fly”.  For example, adjusting drilling strategy and quickly defining the extent of the mineralisation.  Currently, mineral explorers may have to wait weeks or months before the results of the gold analysis are returned from the analytical laboratory, and by this time the drill campaign is over, possibly for another year.  Medium to small exploration companies can ill afford to wait that long in the current financial climate. Interested companies that would like to participate in a field trial are encouraged to attend.





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