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  • The Surface Geology of Australia 1:1M scale dataset (2012 edition) is a seamless national coverage of outcrop and surficial geology, compiled for use at or around 1:1 million scale. The data maps outcropping bedrock geology and unconsolidated or poorly consolidated regolith material covering bedrock. Geological units are represented as polygon and line geometries, and are attributed with information regarding stratigraphic nomenclature and hierarchy, age, lithology, and primary data source. The dataset also contains geological contacts, structural features such as faults and shears, and miscellaneous supporting lines like the boundaries of water and ice bodies. The 2012 dataset has been updated from the previous 2010 data by updating geological unit data to 2012 information in the Australian Stratigraphic Units Database (, incorporating new published mapping in the Northern Territory and Queensland, and correcting errors or inconsistent data identified in the previous edition, particularly in the Phanerozoic geology of Western Australia. The attribute structure of the dataset has also been revised to be more compatible with the GeoSciML data standard, published by the IUGS Commission for Geoscience Information. The first edition of this national dataset was first released in 2008, with map data compiled largely from simplifying and edgematching existing 1:250 000 scale geological maps. Where these maps were not current, more recent source maps ranging in scale from 1:50 000 to 1:1 million were used. In some areas where the only available geological maps were old and poorly located, some repositioning of mapping using recent satellite imagery or geophysics was employed.

  • 1. Band ratio: B11/(B10+B12) Blue is low quartz content Red is high quartz content Geoscience Applications: Use in combination with Silica index to more accurately map "crystalline" quartz rather than poorly ordered silica (e.g. opal), feldspars and compacted clays.

  • 1. 3 band RGB composite Red: B3/B2 Green: B3/B7 Blue: B4/B7 (white = green vegetation) Use this image to help interpret (1) the amount of green vegetation cover (appears as white); (2) basic spectral separation (colour) between different regolith and geological units and regions/provinces; and (3) evidence for unmasked cloud (appears as green).

  • B6/B5 (potential includes: pyrophyllite, alunite, well-ordered kaolinite) Blue is low content, Red is high content Useful for mapping: (1) different clay-type stratigraphic horizons; (2) lithology-overprinting hydrothermal alteration, e.g. high sulphidation, "advanced argillic" alteration comprising pyrophyllite, alunite, kaolinite/dickite; and (3) well-ordered kaolinite (warmer colours) versus poorly-ordered kaolinite (cooler colours) which can be used for mapping in situ versus transported materials, respectively.

  • 1. Band ratio: B5/B4 Blue is low ferrous iron content in carbonate and MgOH minerals like talc and tremolite. Red is high ferrous iron content in carbonate and MgOH minerals like chlorite and actinolite. Useful for mapping: (1) un-oxidised "parent rocks" - i.e. mapping exposed parent rock materials (warm colours) in transported cover; (2) talc/tremolite (Mg-rich - cool colours) versus actinolite (Fe-rich - warm colours); (3) ferrous-bearing carbonates (warm colours) potentially associated with metasomatic "alteration"; (4) calcite/dolomite which are ferrous iron-poor (cool colours); and (5) epidote, which is ferrous iron poor (cool colours) - in combination with FeOH content product (high).

  • 1. Band ratio: (B6+B8)/B7 Blue is low content, Red is high content (potentially includes: chlorite, epidote, jarosite, nontronite, gibbsite, gypsum, opal-chalcedony) Useful for mapping: (1) jarosite (acid conditions) - in combination with ferric oxide content (high); (2) gypsum/gibbsite - in combination with ferric oxide content (low); (3) magnesite - in combination with ferric oxide content (low) and MgOH content (moderate-high) (4) chlorite (e.g. propyllitic alteration) - in combination with Ferrous in MgOH (high); and (5) epidote (calc-silicate alteration) - in combination with Ferrous in MgOH (low).

  • 1. Band ratio: (B5+B7)/B6 Blue is low abundance, Red is high abundance potentially includes: phengite, muscovite, paragonite, lepidolite, illite, brammalite, montmorillonite, beidellite, kaolinite, dickite Useful for mapping: (1) exposed saprolite/saprock (2) clay-rich stratigraphic horizons; (3) lithology-overprinting hydrothermal phyllic (e.g. white mica) alteration; and (4) clay-rich diluents in ore systems (e.g. clay in iron ore). Also combine with AlOH composition to help map: (1) exposed in situ parent material persisting through "cover" which can be expressed as: (a) more abundant AlOH content + (b) long-wavelength (warmer colour) AlOH composition (e.g. muscovite/phengite).

  • 1. Band ratio: B5/B7 Blue is well ordered kaolinite, Al-rich muscovite/illite, paragonite, pyrophyllite Red is Al-poor (Si-rich) muscovite (phengite) useful for mapping: (1) exposed saprolite/saprock is often white mica or Al-smectite (warmer colours) whereas transported materials are often kaolin-rich (cooler colours); (2) clays developed over carbonates, especially Al-smectite (montmorillonite, beidellite) will produce middle to warmers colours. (2) stratigraphic mapping based on different clay-types; and (3) lithology-overprinting hydrothermal alteration, e.g. Si-rich and K-rich phengitic mica (warmer colours). Combine with Ferrous iron in MgOH and FeOH content products to look for evidence of overlapping/juxtaposed potassic metasomatism in ferromagnesian parents rocks (e.g. Archaean greenstone associated Au mineralisation) +/- associated distal propyllitic alteration (e.g. chlorite, amphibole).