Special Issue "3D-Modelling of Crustal Structures and Mineral Deposit Systems"

A special issue of Minerals (ISSN 2075-163X). This special issue belongs to the section "Mineral Deposits".

Deadline for manuscript submissions: 15 April 2022.

Special Issue Editor

Dr. Pierpaolo Guarnieri
E-Mail Website
Guest Editor
Department of Petrology and Economic Geology, Geological Survey of Denmark and Greenland (GEUS), Øster Voldgade 10, 1350 Copenhagen K, Denmark
Interests: structural geology; tectonics; greenland geology; geological mapping; 3D-modelling, 3D-photogeology

Special Issue Information

Dear Colleagues,

The global distribution of different types of mineralization closely correlates in space and time to geodynamic processes resulting from plate tectonics and supercontinent cycle. Crustal-scale structures in the Earth represent a connectivity network linking deep-seated mineral fluids and uppermost crustal levels. The structural control on sedimentation, magmatism and deformation pattern in different tectonic settings is a key issue to be addressed in complex geological environments with mineralization at local and regional scale. In this light, 3D-modelling integrating multi-disciplinary geodata sets in synergy with validated geological interpretation, provides a better comprehensive understanding and visualization of the structural-geological framework in connection with mineral deposit systems, for further assessment of mineral resources and exploration perspective.

The Special Issue “3D-Modelling of Crustal Structures and Mineral Deposit Systems” invites papers dealing with 3D-modelling, structural geology and ore deposits including original applications and new perspectives in research, with contribution from academia, geological surveys and the industry.

Dr. Pierpaolo Guarnieri
Guest Editor

Manuscript Submission Information

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Keywords

  • 3D-modelling
  • Mineralization systems
  • Structures
  • Data integration
  • Uncertainty models
  • Mineral exploration

Published Papers (6 papers)

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Research

Article
Informed Local Smoothing in 3D Implicit Geological Modeling
Minerals 2021, 11(11), 1281; https://doi.org/10.3390/min11111281 - 18 Nov 2021
Viewed by 364
Abstract
Geological models are commonly used to represent geological structures in 3D space. A wide range of methods exists to create these models, with much scientific work focusing recently on implicit representation methods, which perform an interpolation of a three-dimensional field where the relevant [...] Read more.
Geological models are commonly used to represent geological structures in 3D space. A wide range of methods exists to create these models, with much scientific work focusing recently on implicit representation methods, which perform an interpolation of a three-dimensional field where the relevant boundaries are then isosurfaces in this field. However, this method has well-known problems with inhomogeneous data distributions: if regions with densely sampled data points exist, modeling artifacts are common. We present here an approach to overcome this deficiency through a combination of an implicit interpolation algorithm with a local smoothing approach. The approach is based on the concepts of nugget effect and filtered kriging known from conventional geostatistics. It reduces the impact of regularly occurring modeling artifacts that result from data uncertainty and data configuration and additionally aims to improve model robustness for scale-dependent fit-for-purpose modeling. Local smoothing can either be manually adjusted, inferred from quantified uncertainties associated with input data or derived automatically from data configuration. The application for different datasets with varying configuration and noise is presented for a low complexity geologic model. The results show that the approach enables a reduction of artifacts, but may require a careful choice of parameter settings for very inhomogeneous data sets. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue 3D-Modelling of Crustal Structures and Mineral Deposit Systems)
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Article
Local Dynamic Updating Method of Orebody Model Based on Mesh Reconstruction and Mesh Deformation
Minerals 2021, 11(11), 1232; https://doi.org/10.3390/min11111232 - 06 Nov 2021
Viewed by 404
Abstract
In this paper, to update the orebody model based on the given interpreted geological information, we present a local dynamic updating method of the orebody model that allows the interactive construction of the constraint deformation conditions and the dynamic updating of the mesh [...] Read more.
In this paper, to update the orebody model based on the given interpreted geological information, we present a local dynamic updating method of the orebody model that allows the interactive construction of the constraint deformation conditions and the dynamic updating of the mesh model. The rules for constructing deformation constraints based on the control polylines are discussed. Because only part of the model is updated, the updated mesh is effective and the overall quality is satisfactory. Our main contribution is that we propose a local dynamic updating method for the orebody model based on mesh reconstruction and mesh deformation. This method can automatically update a given 3D orebody model based on a set of unordered geological interpretation lines. Moreover, we implement a deformation neighborhood region search method based on the specified ring radius and a local constrained mesh deformation algorithm for the orebody model. Finally, we test the method and show the model update results with real geological datasets, which proves that this method is effective for the local updating of orebody models. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue 3D-Modelling of Crustal Structures and Mineral Deposit Systems)
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Article
Insights and Lessons from 3D Geological and Geophysical Modeling of Mineralized Terranes in Tasmania
Minerals 2021, 11(11), 1195; https://doi.org/10.3390/min11111195 - 27 Oct 2021
Viewed by 479
Abstract
Over the last two decades, Mineral Resources Tasmania has been developing regional 3D geological and geophysical models for prospective terranes at a range of scales and extents as part of its suite of precompetitive geoscience products. These have evolved in conjunction with developments [...] Read more.
Over the last two decades, Mineral Resources Tasmania has been developing regional 3D geological and geophysical models for prospective terranes at a range of scales and extents as part of its suite of precompetitive geoscience products. These have evolved in conjunction with developments in 3D modeling technology over that time. Commencing with a jurisdiction-wide 3D model in 2002, subsequent modeling projects have explored a range of approaches to the development of 3D models as a vehicle for the better synthesis and understanding of controls on ore-forming processes and prospectivity. These models are built on high-quality potential field data sets. Assignment of bulk properties derived from previous well-constrained geophysical modeling and an extensive rock property database has enabled the identification of anomalous features that have been targeted for follow-up mineral exploration. An aspect of this effort has been the generation of uncertainty estimates for model features. Our experience is that this process can be hindered by models that are too large or too detailed to be interrogated easily, especially when modeling techniques do not readily permit significant geometric changes. The most effective 3D modeling workflow for insights into mineral exploration is that which facilitates the rapid hypothesis testing of a wide range of scenarios whilst satisfying the constraints of observed data. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue 3D-Modelling of Crustal Structures and Mineral Deposit Systems)
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Article
Three-Dimensional Anisotropic Inversions for Time-Domain Airborne Electromagnetic Data
Minerals 2021, 11(2), 218; https://doi.org/10.3390/min11020218 - 20 Feb 2021
Viewed by 795
Abstract
Rocks and ores in nature usually appear macro-anisotropic, especially in sedimentary areas with strong layering. This anisotropy will lead to false interpretation of electromagnetic (EM) data when inverted under the assumption of an isotropic earth. However, the time-domain (TD) airborne EM (AEM) inversion [...] Read more.
Rocks and ores in nature usually appear macro-anisotropic, especially in sedimentary areas with strong layering. This anisotropy will lead to false interpretation of electromagnetic (EM) data when inverted under the assumption of an isotropic earth. However, the time-domain (TD) airborne EM (AEM) inversion for an anisotropic model has not attracted much attention. To get reasonable inversion results from TD AEM data, we present in this paper the forward modeling and inversion methods based on a triaxial anisotropic model. We apply three-dimensional (3D) finite-difference on the secondary scattered electric field equation to calculate the frequency-domain (FD) EM responses, then we use the inverse Fourier transform and waveform convolution to obtain TD responses. For the regularized inversion, we calculate directly the sensitivities with respect to three diagonal conductivities and then use the Gauss–Newton (GN) optimization scheme to recover model parameters. To speed up the computation and to reduce the memory requirement, we adopt the moving footprint concept and separate the whole model into a series of small sub-models for the inversion. Finally, we compare our anisotropic inversion scheme with the isotropic one using both synthetic and field data. Numerical experiments show that the anisotropic inversion has inherent advantages over the isotropic ones, we can get more reasonable results for the anisotropic earth structures. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue 3D-Modelling of Crustal Structures and Mineral Deposit Systems)
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Article
3D Geological Model of the Touro Cu Deposit, A World-Class Mafic-Siliciclastic VMS Deposit in the NW of the Iberian Peninsula
Minerals 2021, 11(1), 85; https://doi.org/10.3390/min11010085 - 16 Jan 2021
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 1048
Abstract
The Touro volcanogenic massive sulfide (VMS) deposit is located in the NW of the Iberian Variscan massif in the Galicia-Trás-os-Montes Zone, an amalgamation of several allochthonous terrains. The Órdenes complex is the most extensive of the allochthone complexes, and amphibolites and paragneisses host [...] Read more.
The Touro volcanogenic massive sulfide (VMS) deposit is located in the NW of the Iberian Variscan massif in the Galicia-Trás-os-Montes Zone, an amalgamation of several allochthonous terrains. The Órdenes complex is the most extensive of the allochthone complexes, and amphibolites and paragneisses host the deposit, characterized as being massive or semimassive (stringers) sulfides, mostly made up of pyrrhotite and chalcopyrite. The total resources are 103 Mt, containing 0.41% copper. A 3D model of the different orebodies and host rocks was generated using data from 1090 drill core logs. The model revealed that the structure of the area is a N–S-trending antiform. The orebodies crop out in the limbs and in the hinge zone. The mineralized structures are mostly tabular, up to 100 m in thickness and subhorizontal. Based on the petrography, geochemistry and the 3D model, the Touro deposit is classified as a VMS of the mafic-siliciclastic type formed in an Ordovician back-arc setting, which was buried and metamorphosed in Middle Devonian. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue 3D-Modelling of Crustal Structures and Mineral Deposit Systems)
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Article
Implicit Geomodelling of the Merensky and UG2 Reefs of the Bushveld Complex from Open-Source Data: Implications for the Complex’s Structural History
Minerals 2020, 10(11), 975; https://doi.org/10.3390/min10110975 - 01 Nov 2020
Viewed by 881
Abstract
The Bushveld Complex (BC) is the world’s largest source of platinum group metals. Extensive studies on the complex have focused on its geochemistry, magma and platinum group mineral genesis, mineral characterization and intrusion mechanisms. However, relatively little work has been undertaken on the [...] Read more.
The Bushveld Complex (BC) is the world’s largest source of platinum group metals. Extensive studies on the complex have focused on its geochemistry, magma and platinum group mineral genesis, mineral characterization and intrusion mechanisms. However, relatively little work has been undertaken on the overall 3D geometry of the complex, which detracts from the adequate contextualization of such studies. Furthermore, the absence of a broader 3D model of the complex does not permit the identification of structural trends and mineralization patterns. This contribution details the construction of 3D implicitly-modelled Merensky and UG2 Reefs across the Rustenburg Layered Suite of the BC, using Seequent’s Leapfrog software. Multiple open-source and public-domain data sources and modelling workflows were explored to account for disparities in data resolution, data spacing and clustering, and the resolution of model outputs. Key outcomes are (1) a representative, fully-implicit, dynamic geological model of the Merensky and UG2 Reefs over the main chamber of the BC; (2) identification of modelled features that augment the current understanding of the BC’s kinematic history and cumulative deformation; and (3) identification and analysis of subtle geometrical trends and patterns, such as inter-reef spacing and modelled depths, as well as structural domains that may not have been apparent from numerous, more focused or isolated petrological or geochemical studies. It is anticipated that this baseline 3D model will form the foundation for future, possibly localized, dynamic updates as further information becomes available. The addition of proprietary (viz., non-open-source) data, such as 2D seismic sections and 3D seismic surveys, would enhance the overall resolution and quality of such a model and resulting interpretations. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue 3D-Modelling of Crustal Structures and Mineral Deposit Systems)
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Planned Papers

The below list represents only planned manuscripts. Some of these manuscripts have not been received by the Editorial Office yet. Papers submitted to MDPI journals are subject to peer-review.

1. Title: Study on Autocorrelation Grid of 3D Geological Modeling

Author: Liu Huan

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