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  • As part of initiatives by the Australian and Queensland Governments, four new seismic reflection lines and three corresponding magnetotelluric lines were acquired in 2007 over the Mt Isa, Georgetown and Charters Towers regions. These data, combined with existing multidisciplinary data, have provided new insights into the 3D architecture, geodynamics and economic potential of the North Queensland region.

  • Abstract for initial submission, pending acceptance by convention technical program committee.

  • The Olympic Copper-Gold Province of the eastern Gawler Craton of South Australia, in hosting the Olympic Dam, Prominent Hill, Carrapateena and Moonta-Wallaroo deposits, has the greatest known iron-oxide, copper, gold and uranium (IOCGU) metal endowment of any geological province on Earth. The historic Moonta-Wallaroo copper-gold mining fi eld is within the Moonta sub-domain and is hosted by the ~1750 Ma Wallaroo Group that preserves some evidence of evaporitic sedimentation, similar to other major iron oxide-copper-gold (IOCG) provinces in Australia and North America. Observations in the Moonta-Wallaroo district indicate that mineralisation was broadly associated with intense metasomatic alteration, intrusion of granites and gabbros of the Hiltaba Suite, moderate grade metamorphism and intensely partitioned deformation. The driving force of this extensive ~1600 to 1500 Ma hydrothermal, magmatic and tectonic event was a major thermal pulse, the cause of which remains under debate. The vein-style mineralisation in the Moonta-Wallaroo district developed in ground prepared by ductile shearing. Widespread sub-economic copper mineralisation in the region is associated with intense regional magnetite-bearing skarn-like alteration of the Cloncurry type, with oxidation and hematite replacement of early magnetite. Targeting of structurally-controlled demagnetised zones and the oxidised margins of magnetic anomalies has been applied successfully in the northern Olympic Copper-Gold Province (e.g. Prominent Hill) and is also applicable to the Moonta-Wallaroo region. The recently discovered copper-gold mineralisation at the Hillside copper-gold deposit demonstrates the continued prospectivity of this southern portion of the Olympic Copper-Gold Province.

  • Flexural backstripping applied to 5 seismic reflection lines has been used to constrain the distribution of lithosphere thinning, crustal structure and the location of the ocean-continent transition (OCT) of the southern Australian Bight Basin rifted margin. The amplitude of the anomalous subsidence in the southern margin of Australia was determined for each seismic line by means of residual depth anomalies (RDA) and included in all models. Sensitivity tests of predicted syn-breakup melt generated during lithosphere thinning and breakup were investigated assuming a magma-poor and a normal non-volcanic margin. The Bight Basin shows an apparent crustal segmentation between the Eyre-Recherche and the Ceduna-Recherche sub-basins. Whilst the lateral variation of lithosphere thinning in the Ceduna-Recherche sub-basin is gradual, in the Eyre-Recherche it is abrupt, predicting a highly extended continental crust underneath the Recherche sub-basin. Predicted ocean-continent transition (OCT) widths for the Bight Basin range from approximately 100 km to a maximum of 200 km, although the structure of the OCT itself is unclear. The predicted OCT determined from flexural backstripping compared with independent estimates of basement thickness derived from gravity inversion are in general agreement. Linear marine magnetic anomalies appear to be lying within the predicted OCT of the Bight Basin. If the magnetic anomalies are due to the presence of highly serpentinized peridotites and mafic bodies, the magnetic lineations cannot be used to constrain conventional seafloor spreading.