Special Issue "Geophysics for Mineral Exploration"

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

Deadline for manuscript submissions: 31 October 2020.

Special Issue Editor

Prof. Michael S. Zhdanov
Website
Guest Editor
Distinguished Professor, University of Utah, Salt Lake City, UT 84112, USA
Interests: theoretical and applied geophysics; inverse theory; joint inversion; mineral exploration; electromagnetic, gravity, magnetic, and seismic methods

Special Issue Information

Dear Colleagues,

Exploration geophysics plays a major role in unlocking mineral reserves. It is well recognized that many easily-discovered large mineral deposits with a strong geophysical signature have been already identified. Future discoveries present significant challengers being located undercover, in remote areas, with less prominent geophysical signals. The modern-day challenges of exploration require developing novel geophysical techniques, which improve exploration success and lead to new discoveries. This Special Issue invites papers which focus on emerging geophysical techniques for mineral exploration, novel interpretation methods, including joint inversion of multiphysics data, and challenging case studies.

Prof. Michael S. Zhdanov
Guest Editor

Manuscript Submission Information

Manuscripts should be submitted online at www.mdpi.com by registering and logging in to this website. Once you are registered, click here to go to the submission form. Manuscripts can be submitted until the deadline. All papers will be peer-reviewed. Accepted papers will be published continuously in the journal (as soon as accepted) and will be listed together on the special issue website. Research articles, review articles as well as short communications are invited. For planned papers, a title and short abstract (about 100 words) can be sent to the Editorial Office for announcement on this website.

Submitted manuscripts should not have been published previously, nor be under consideration for publication elsewhere (except conference proceedings papers). All manuscripts are thoroughly refereed through a single-blind peer-review process. A guide for authors and other relevant information for submission of manuscripts is available on the Instructions for Authors page. Minerals is an international peer-reviewed open access monthly journal published by MDPI.

Please visit the Instructions for Authors page before submitting a manuscript. The Article Processing Charge (APC) for publication in this open access journal is 1600 CHF (Swiss Francs). Submitted papers should be well formatted and use good English. Authors may use MDPI's English editing service prior to publication or during author revisions.

Keywords

  • Rock physics
  • Gravity, magnetic, and electromagnetic methods
  • Induced polarization
  • Seismic methods
  • Ground and downhole geophysics
  • Advances in airborne geophysics
  • Modeling and inversion
  • Joint inversion of multiphysics data
  • Exploration under cover
  • Deep penetrating geophysical methods
  • Case studies

Published Papers (4 papers)

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Research

Open AccessArticle
Three-Dimensional Regularized Focusing Migration: A Case Study from the Yucheng Mining Area, Shandong, China
Minerals 2020, 10(5), 471; https://doi.org/10.3390/min10050471 - 22 May 2020
Abstract
Gravity migration is a fast imaging technique based on the migration concept to obtain subsurface density distribution. For higher resolution of migration imaging results, we propose a 3D regularized focusing migration method that implements migration imaging of an entire gravity survey with a [...] Read more.
Gravity migration is a fast imaging technique based on the migration concept to obtain subsurface density distribution. For higher resolution of migration imaging results, we propose a 3D regularized focusing migration method that implements migration imaging of an entire gravity survey with a focusing stabilizer based on regularization theory. When determining the model parameters, the iterative direction is chosen as the conjugate migration direction, and the step size is selected on the basis of the Wolfe–Powell conditions. The model tests demonstrate that the proposed method can improve the resolution and precision of imaging results, especially for blocky structures. At the same time, the method has high computational efficiency, which allows rapid imaging for large-scale gravity data. It also has high stability in noisy conditions. The developed novel method is applied to interpret gravity data collected from the skarn-type iron deposits in Yucheng, Shandong province. Migration results show that the depth of the buried iron ore in this area is 750–1500 m, which is consistent with the drilling data. We also provide recommendations for further mineral exploration in the survey area. This method can be used to complete rapid global imaging of large mining areas and it provides important technical support for exploration of deep, concealed deposits. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Geophysics for Mineral Exploration)
Open AccessArticle
Three-Dimensional P-wave Velocity Structure of the Zhuxi Ore Deposit, South China Revealed by Control-Source First-Arrival Tomography
Minerals 2020, 10(2), 148; https://doi.org/10.3390/min10020148 - 09 Feb 2020
Abstract
The Zhuxi ore deposit, located in Jiangxi province, South China, is the largest tungsten reserve in the world. To better understand the geological structure and distribution of orebodies, we conducted a high resolution three-dimensional P-wave velocity tomography of the uppermost 0.5 km beneath [...] Read more.
The Zhuxi ore deposit, located in Jiangxi province, South China, is the largest tungsten reserve in the world. To better understand the geological structure and distribution of orebodies, we conducted a high resolution three-dimensional P-wave velocity tomography of the uppermost 0.5 km beneath the Zhuxi ore deposit and adjacent area. Our velocity model was derived from 761,653 P-wave first arrivals from 998 control-source shots, recorded by a dense array. As the first 3D P-wave velocity structure of the Zhuxi ore deposit, our model agrees with local topographic and tectonic structures and shows depth-dependent velocity similar to laboratory measurements. The Carboniferous formations hosting the proven orebodies are imaged as high velocities. The high-velocity anomalies extend to a larger area beyond the proven orebodies, and the locations of high–low velocity boundaries are in accordance with the boundaries between the Neoproterozoic formation and the Carboniferous–Triassic formation. Seismic tomography reveals that high-velocity anomalies are closely related to the mineralized areas. Our results are helpful for further evaluating the total reserves and suggest that seismic tomography can be a useful tool for mineral exploration. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Geophysics for Mineral Exploration)
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Open AccessArticle
Novel Approach to Modeling the Seismic Waves in the Areas with Complex Fractured Geological Structures
Minerals 2020, 10(2), 122; https://doi.org/10.3390/min10020122 - 30 Jan 2020
Abstract
This paper presents a novel approach to modeling the propagation of seismic waves in a medium containing subvertical fractured inhomogeneities, typical for mineralization zones. The developed method allows us to perform calculations on a structural computational grid, which avoids the construction of unstructured [...] Read more.
This paper presents a novel approach to modeling the propagation of seismic waves in a medium containing subvertical fractured inhomogeneities, typical for mineralization zones. The developed method allows us to perform calculations on a structural computational grid, which avoids the construction of unstructured grids. For the calculations, the grid-characteristic method is used. We also present a comparison of the proposed method with the one described at earlier works and discuss the areas of its practical application. As an example, the numerical results for a cluster of subvertical fractures are given. A new approach for modeling fractures makes it quite easy to incorporate fractured objects into the seismic models and perform calculations without using algorithms on unstructured and curved grids. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Geophysics for Mineral Exploration)
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Open AccessArticle
Parallel Simulation of Audio- and Radio-Magnetotelluric Data
Minerals 2020, 10(1), 42; https://doi.org/10.3390/min10010042 - 31 Dec 2019
Abstract
This paper presents a novel numerical method for simulation controlled-source audio-magnetotellurics (CSAMT) and radio-magnetotellurics (CSRMT) data. These methods are widely used in mineral exploration. Interpretation of the CSAMT and CSRMT data collected over an area with the complex geology requires application of effective [...] Read more.
This paper presents a novel numerical method for simulation controlled-source audio-magnetotellurics (CSAMT) and radio-magnetotellurics (CSRMT) data. These methods are widely used in mineral exploration. Interpretation of the CSAMT and CSRMT data collected over an area with the complex geology requires application of effective methods of numerical modeling capable to represent the geoelectrical model of a deposit well. In this paper, we considered an approach to 3D electromagnetic (EM) modeling based on new types of preconditioned iterative solvers for finite-difference (FD) EM simulation. The first preconditioner used fast direct inversion of the layered Earth FD matrix (Green’s function preconditioner). The other combined the first with a contraction operator transformation. To illustrate the effectiveness of the developed numerical modeling methods, a 3D resistivity model of Aleksandrovka study area in Kaluga Region, Russia, was prepared based on drilling data, AMT, and a detailed CSRMT survey. We conducted parallel EM simulation of the full CSRMT survey. Our results indicated that the developed methods can be effectively used for modeling EM responses over a realistic complex geoelectrical model for a controlled source EM survey with hundreds of receiver stations. The contraction-operator preconditioner outperformed the Green’s function preconditioner by factor of 7–10, both with respect to run-time and iteration count, and even more at higher frequencies. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Geophysics for Mineral Exploration)
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