Summary of Proposed Research Program for Master of Philosophy

Structural Geology and Gold Mineralisation of the Ora Banda – Zulieka District,
Eastern Goldfields, Western Australia

1. Abstract

A research program proposed for a Master of Science (Geology) degree will focus on structural
controls on gold mineralisation in the Ora Banda – Zuleika district, north of Kalgoorlie, Western
Australia. The main objectives of the research are to document the structural geology of the
study area, determine structural controls on gold mineralisation, and develop a regional model of
the structural geology and gold occurrences to define the distribution, origins of and
relationships between strain and gold mineralisation in the Ora Banda Domain.

The study is focussed on the Enterprise gold deposit in the Ora Banda – Zuleika mining district,
a recent significant discovery in the Eastern Goldfields. It is distinguished by its location away
from regional ductile shear zones and a significant component of the project involves
recognition of the relationships between structural elements and their timing to gold
mineralisation. The study will concentrate on observation and documentation of field and mine-
based structural relationships with detailed laboratory analysis including thin section studies.
Ethical issues do not affect the study.

The project is sponsored by a major mining company and the results of the research will have
important implications for future gold exploration. The thesis is expected to be submitted by the
end of Year 2.

2. Objectives

The objectives of the research program are to:

1. Document the structural geological relationships within the Zuleika Shear Zone,
particularly the relationships between regional ductile shear zones and mesoscopic brittle-
ductile faults in a high fracture-density structural corridor.

2. Document the geology of Enterprise gold deposit, particularly mesoscopic-scale
structural relationships.

3. Assess possible correlation between the structural geometry and the distribution of gold
deposits in the Ora Banda Domain.

4. Develop a structural model for the Ora Banda area that explains the distribution of
structures, at all scales and the timing of emplacement of gold mineralisation.

3. Background

The Enterprise gold deposit is a significant recent discovery at the Ora Banda mining centre, 69km
northwest of Kalgoorlie in Western Australia. Ora Banda includes several deposits that collectively
form a corridor with greater than 3Moz gold endowment and is therefore a significant gold mining
district. Important features are the location, approximately 10km from the nearest regional ductile
shear zone and the relatively undeformed host sequence.

The depositional sequence is well known at Ora Banda but the relationship between structural
development and gold mineralisation is poorly understood. Previous studies have focussed on
individual deposits and structures and this will be the first attempt to develop a coherent model for
structural development and gold mineralisation that includes all of the deposits.

4. Significance

The key outcome of this research program is the documentation of regular structural geometry at
macro to micro scale and the interpretation of the distribution of strain throughout the Ora Banda
structural domain. An important aspect is the interpretation of late faults in the Kalgoorlie district as
structures that cross-cut the regional ductile shear zones and are not produced as lower order
structures off the larger shear zones.

A regular structural system has been recognised from interpretation of aeromagnetic data and the
distribution of these structures is coincident with the distribution of gold deposits. Several important
correlations exist between structural style/timing and gold deposits, and the documentation of these
relationships is central to this study.

The results of this study will also be of more regional significance to the structural interpretation of
the greenstone sequence in the Ora Banda Domain, as studies at the Enterprise mine will allow the
late fault event to be separated into a more detailed sequence of deformation pulses.

Correlation of geological structure and gold deposition will have particular significance for future
gold exploration in the Eastern Goldfields.

5. Research Methodology

Semi-regional and mine based geological (structural) mapping make up the majority of the work
required by this research project. Deductions and interpretations will rely heavily upon mesoscale
and macroscale structural relationships. Definition and characterisation of structures will require
detailed mesoscopic and microscopic observations. The presentation of these relationships will
include rigorous documentation via field mapping, detailed hand specimen description and oriented
thin section observation of structural style and mineralogical evolution. Deep weathering in the
Eastern Goldfields Province dictates the use of small isolated occurrences of good outcrop for
sample collection and mapping (i.e. open-pit and underground mines and diamond drill core).

Samples for detailed mineralogical/structural analysis will be taken from oriented diamond drill core
where fresh unweathered specimens are available. Examples of all major structural elements will be
selected with analysis and rotation of diamond core to return the structures to the true orientation
using DIPS stereographic software. Structural data will be collected during open-pit mapping from a
number of mines in the Ora Banda district with subsequent structural analysis.

Thin sections will be prepared from oriented specimens to permit identification of constituent
mineralogy, using transmitted and reflected light microscopy, and microstructural study of
deformation textures and fabric elements.

Map compilation and construction of cross-sections will be used during interpretation and analysis
of structural distribution to determine cross-cutting relationships that reflect the regional
deformation events. Aeromagnetic data sets will be used to extrapolate from small well-known areas
into adjacent greenstones that are otherwise inaccessible due to deep weathering and lack of

6. Ethical Issues

No ethical issues arise in the course of this research project.

7. Facilities and Resources

All facilities and resources with the exception of laboratory facilities will be provided by XXX, the
industry sponsor of the project. Arrangements have been made for the use of petrographic
microscope facilities at Curtin University of Technology, Bentley and Kalgoorlie campuses.

8. Data Storage

All rock samples and thin sections referred to in the thesis and a hardcopy of field data will be
stored in the school of Applied Geology, Curtin University of Technology for a period of 5 years. It
is also intended to compile a copy of the thesis on CD.

Core samples that are referred to in photographs will remain stored in the industry partner’s core
library at Ora Banda.

9. Time Schedule
The filed work will be completed by the end of April, Year 2, with a complete draft of the thesis
scheduled for submission to the principal supervisor by J une Year 3. Final word processing,
preparation of diagrams and map drafting and is expected to take the remainder of the time. The
thesis is due to be submitted in August of Year 3.

Masters (Research) Project
Structural controls on gold mineralisation, Ora Banda district, WA

Research Timeline

Date commenced SEP Year 1

Literature search Ongoing from SEP Year 1

Fieldwork (Enterprise deposit), including OCT - NOV Year 1
Structural mapping and sampling

Aerial photo interpretation DEC Year 1 - J AN Year 2

Map drafting (Enterprise pit ) DEC Year 1 - J AN Year 2

Thesis preparation (initial chapters) DEC Year 1 - FEB Year 2

Structural analysis J AN - MAR Year 2
(structural data compiled into digital format
for interpretation of structural elements and

Drill core logging, and sample collection J AN Year 2

Field mapping (regional structure) MAR Year 2

Completion of structural analysis, and first MAY - OCT Year 2
Draft of relevant chapters

Laboratory study of thin sections MAY - OCT Year 2

Thesis writing (COMPLETE DRAFT) SEP Year 2 - J UN Year 3

Completion of map drafting MAY Year 3

Submission of thesis AUG Year 3

[A detailed reference list was included.]

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