Themes and Sessions


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Theme 11: Earth's resources : Ores - under the patronage of SGA

Co-ordinators:
Jan Pasava (Czech Geological Survey)
Keiko Hattori (University of Ottawa)

Team members:
Robert Creaser (University of Alberta), Chris Heinrich (ETH Zurich), Bernd Lehmann (TU-Clausthal), Fernando Tornos (Instituto Geologico y Minero de España), Par Weihed (University of Lulea)

Theme 11 sessions:

11a: Black Shales and Ocean-Atmosphere Evolution: Implications for Metal Accumulation – Sponsored by SGA
Convenors: Bernd Lehmann, Jan Pasava
Keynote: Poul Emsbo (USGS Denver)
Orals: Tue AM
Posters: Mon PM
Marine black shales (organic carbon-rich sedimentary rocks) are the most important source rocks for hydrocarbons, and important hosts for a wide variety of ore deposits. They are markers of global paleo-geographic and paleo-environmental change (such as supercontinent break-up, superplume events) and provide important constraints on the evolution of the atmosphere-ocean system during Earth´s history. Our session aims at putting metal enrichment in black shales in a larger paleo-environmental perspective.
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11b: Ore Deposits and the Role of the Lithospheric Mantle – Sponsored by SGA
Convenors: Wolfgang Dereck Maier, Sisir K. Mondal, Thomas Oberthür, Marco Fiorentini
Keynote: Steve Barnes (CSIRO/CET-University of Western Australia)
Orals: Thu AM, Thu PM, Fri AM
Posters: Thu PM
The role of the lithospheric mantle in magma generation has been particularly controversial since the 1970s when evidence for strong and regionally homogenous crustal components was first found in certain flood-type basalt provinces (e.g. Karoo, Parana, Ventersdorp). Recent Re/Os studies have suggested that the Bushveld Complex may contain an important SCLM component, consistent with the location of most PGE deposits in the centres of cratons. Furthermore, several recent workers have suggested that the metals in orogenic gold deposits and IOCG deposits may be derived from the SCLM. These questions are important in constraining magma genesis. In view of the increasing demand for metals across the world, they are also of considerable exploration importance. The proposed session will cover the current state of knowledge and understanding of the composition of the SCLM, processes of magma generation, and evidence for metal derivation in a range of magmatic and hydrothermal mineral deposits from the SCLM.
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11c: Metal Solubility in Geofluids and Ore-Forming Silicate Melts
Convenors: Jacob Hanley, Zoltan Zajacz, A.E. Williams-Jones, James Webster
Keynote: Gleb Pokrovski (Université de Toulouse)
Orals: Tue PM, Wed AM, Wed PM
Posters: Tue PM
The continued application of new and novel analytical, computational, and experimental methods to studies of magmatic and hydrothermal ore-forming systems is rapidly increasing our understanding of the physiochemical factors that impact the initial enrichment of ore metals in fluid and melt phases, the successful transport of those metals through reactive host rocks, and the processes governing metal precipitation. This session, sponsored by the Mineral Deposits Division of Canada, welcomes oral and poster contributions that enhance our understanding of metal solubility, speciation, and transport in geologically-relevant fluids (aqueous or non-aqueous)and melts (silicate, sulfide, carbonate) in ore-forming environments.
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11d: Dating of Mineral Deposits and Fluid Flow in the Lithosphere
Convenors: Robert Creaser, Keiko Hattori
Keynote: Holly Stein (AIRIE/Colorado State University)
Orals: Mon AM, Mon PM
Posters: Mon PM
The session welcomes presentations of a broad range of geochemical and isotopic data directed at investigating the nature and timing of mineralization and associated fluid flow at varying depths of the lithosphere. Contributions involving the absolute timing of mineral deposit formation and the relationship to geologic and tectonic processes are especially welcome, as well as geochemical and isotopic studies of fluid flow and metal accumulation in the lithosphere.
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11e: Biogeochemistry and Geomicrobiology of Ore Deposits – Sponsored by SGA
Convenor: Gordon Southam
Keynote: Frank Reith (The University of Adelaide)
Orals: Tue AM
Posters: Mon PM
This session is devoted to the study of the relationship between the ore forming systems and the biologic activity in its widest sense. It includes topics such as stable isotopes as tracers of biogenic activity, biomarkers and ore deposits, biogeochemistry of gold, platinum and PGE’s, biogenic reduction of sulfate and ore formation, bacteria during supergene alteration, biologic activity related to formation of volcanogenic massive sulfides and similar topics. Microorganisms are widely used in ore processing, and may point the way to new ore deposits.The session welcomes oral or poster contributions that enhance our understanding of fundamental (bio)geochemical and geomicrobial processes that underlie the dispersion and accumulation of metals in ore-systems and soils, sediments and biota overlying mineralized systems.
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11f: Natural and Synthetic Platinum-Group Minerals (PGM): Tracers of Processes at High and Low Temperatures – Sponsored by IMA COM and SGA
Convenors: Oskar Thalhammer, Federica Zaccarini, Juraj Farkaš
Keynote: Alexandre Raphael Cabral (Technical University of Clausthal)
Orals: Fri PM
Posters: Thu PM
The Platinum-group elements (PGE = Os, Ir, Ru, Rh,Pt and Pd) occur naturally, as alloys, native elements or combinations with other elements to form the so-called platinum-group minerals (PGM). Many PGM crystallize at high temperature, commonly in excess of 1000℃ and are, in most cases, associated with magmatic Ni-Cu-Fe sulphide and chromite deposits. Recently, on the basis of observation of natural systems and experimental work, it has been demonstrated that magmatic PGM may become unstable at low temperatures and be altered to form secondary phases. Therefore, the study of PGM over a large temperature range underlines the importance of understanding the stability of PGE phases in different environments and at different conditions. However, detailed investigation of natural PGM are often challenging, due to the fact that they are extremely rare and generally occur as tiny (<100mm) crystals. As a consequence, new experimental developments and applications of modern analytical techniques are required to fully characterise the PGM stability fields. This session will attempt to summarize recent advances in the investigation of PGM, with special regard to their genesis under different conditions. Oral and poster presentations on natural and synthetic PGM are welcome.The session is sponsored by IMA COM.
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11g: The Rare Earth Elements: Their Deposits, Geochemistry, and Environmental Impact
Convenors: Michael Bau, Ulrich Schwarz-Schampera, James R. Hein
Keynote: Toshihiko Ohnuki (Japan Atomic Energy Research Institute)
Orals: Fri AM, Fri PM
Posters: Thu PM
Having left the realm of "pure" academia, the Rare Earth Elements (REEs) are because of economic and political reasons, today classified as "strategic metals" and have gained much attention as an important commodity. In addition to their use as valuable geochemical tools in research, increasing demand from high-tech processes and products did not only lead to strongly increasing exploration activity, but also to increased amounts of REE that are released into the environment. We encourage contributions reflecting the prominent role of REEs in the geosciences, including studies of their mineral deposits, their behaviour in igneous and aqueous geochemical systems, their biogeochemistry, their environmental behaviour, and their ecotoxicity.
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Theme 11 related sessions:

10h: Geochemical Frontiers of the Rock/Water/Hydrocarbon System
Convenors: Bruce Yardley, Christian Ostertag-Henning
Keynote: Mike Lewan (USGS (Denver, USA))
Orals: Wed AM, Wed PM
Posters: Wed PM
The geosphere plays an integral part in the majority of our energy systems, whether as a source of raw materials or a sink for waste products, and so an understanding of how fluids and minerals interact in the upper few kilometres of the crust is an essential starting point for more efficient and cleaner energy. This session brings together investigations of the mechanisms and rates of mineral-fluid and fluid-fluid interactions relevant to understanding how energy-related activities (e.g. in hydrocarbon reservoirs, nuclear waste storage sites or geothermal systems) may impact on both physical and chemical processes in the geosphere. We welcome contributions ranging from theoretical or laboratory studies of fluid processes to field investigations of engineered or analogue systems. The focus is on the fundamental aspects of the behaviour of these systems and their lessons for other energy applications.
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16a: Geochemical Processes in Mining Environments – Sponsered by MIBRAG
Convenors: Kate Campbell, Colleen Hansel, Kai-Uwe Ulrich
Keynote: Kirk Nordstrom (USGS)
Orals: Wed AM, Wed PM, Thu AM, Thu PM
Posters: Wed PM
As the demand for mineral resources and fossil fuels continues to grow worldwide, the impact of mining will be an increasingly important concern in the field of environmental science. In addition, the legacy of mining has left thousands of sites worldwide contaminated by mining and associated practices such as tailings processing and disposal. In this session, we will explore the geochemistry, mineralogy, and microbiology of metals and trace elements in mining-impacted environments. Acid, neutral, and alkaline systems will be considered. Topics may include laboratory- and field-based characterization of mine wastes, down-gradient transport, biogeochemical processes, attenuation, (bio-)remediation strategies, and predictive modeling.
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17k: Significance of Iodine in Biogeochemistry and the Environmental Sciences: Special Session Commemorating the Bicentennial of the Discovery of Iodine
Convenors: Yasuyuki Muramatsu, Glen Snyder
Keynote: Frithjof Kuepper (Scottish Association for Marine Science)
Orals: Thu AM, Thu PM
Posters: Wed PM
Elemental iodine was first discovered 200 years ago (1811) in seaweed samples. Today, iodine is considered to be an important trace element, yet little is known regarding the distribution and cycling of this element in nature. The accumulation and enrichment mechanisms of iodine in methane brines, geothermal systems, and desert nitrate deposits are still not clear. Nor do we understand well the mechanisms of environmental depletion which can lead to human iodine deficiency disorders. Bacteria, algae, fungi and other organisms likely contribute to the cycling of this element in the global environment. This session will highlight recent advances on iodine studies, including topics related to geochemical distribution and behavior, enrichments due to geochemical processes, microbially-mediated mobility, and biological accumulation, as well as analytical methods and speciation studies. The use of long-lived iodine-129 as an isotopic tracer of geochemical and environmental processes will also be discussed. Invited speakers: George Luther III (Univ. Delaware), Seigo Amachi (Chiba Univ.), Martin Reich (Univ. Chile).
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19c: Modeling Transition Metal Compounds: Oxides, Sulfides, and Interfaces
Convenors: Rossitza Pentcheva, Ronald Cohen
Keynote: Udo Becker (University of Michigan, Dept. of geol. Sciences)
Orals: Tue AM
Posters: Tue PM
Unlike transition-metal-free materials which are well described by standard applications of density functional theory, transition metal bearing minerals present major challenges to computational mineral physics. This session will assess methodological developments beyond standard density functional theory (LDA+U, LDA+DMFT, QMC, hybrid functionals) and discuss issues of accuracy, speed, and generality which are not yet understood. Applications to transition metal compounds including oxides and sulfides will also be addressed, particularly issues relevant to modelling materials under pressure as well as phenomena arising at correlated solid-solid interfaces.
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19f: Bridging the Gap between Atomic, Pore, and Continuum Scales
Convenors: Virginie Marry, Carl Steefel
Keynote: Christophe Tournassat (French Geological Survey)
Orals: Mon AM
Posters: Mon PM
A reliable description of fluid and mass transport through porous media is necessary in many applications in the geological sciences, including CO2 sequestration, radioactive waste storage in deep geological formations, subsurface contaminant transport, and petroleum and natural gas extraction. At the largest scale, reactive transport simulations allow one to describe fluid and solute dynamics averaged over a representative elementary volume to which are assigned macroscopic (or continuum) parameters such as porosity, permeability, chemical reaction rates and constants. Although necessary for predictions at the largest scale, macroscopic simulations cannot provide insight into the chemical and physical phenomena taking place at fluid-solid or fluid-fluid-solid interfaces. Simulations at smaller time and space scales (Lattice-Boltzmann, Brownian dynamics, dissipative particle dynamics, classical and ab initio molecular dynamics, etc…) can provide a better understanding of natural processes at the scale at which they actually take place. Each modeling scale has advantages and disadvantages. For example, classical molecular dynamics simulations can capture features linked to the specific interactions between the fluid and the solid surface (wetting behavior, ordering and/or slip at the interface, etc.) that a Lattice-Boltzmann simulation is unable to show. However, molecular dynamics can only account for pores of a few nanometers over very short periods of time because of the computational expense. In contrast, Lattice Boltzmann or other continuum methods can capture phenomena occurring at the pore scale, an essential requirement if the effects of nano- and microporosity are to be addressed in macroscopic simulations.Unfortunately, the link between the different scales is not obvious, so a reliable coarse-graining strategy to construct consistent and less phenomenological models would constitute an important advance. In this session we wish to highlight works that combine different levels and scales of description and/or that provide results that are of use in developing a coarse-graining approach for multi-phase fluid flow, transport, and reaction in porous media.
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20h: Abundance and Distribution of Critical High-Tech Metals in Ore Minerals
Convenors: F. Michael Meyer, Jens Gutzmer
Keynote: Ulrich Schwarz-Schampera (BGR (Fed. Inst. Geosci. Nat. Resources), Hannover)
Orals: Wed AM
Posters: Tue PM
Recent concern about available resources for rare and scarce commodities has led to the concept of criticality of ore minerals and associated metals. The two central dimensions of criticality are importance in use and availability. Critical minerals and metals (e.g. Sb, In, Be, Nb, PGM, Ga, REE, Ge, Ta, etc) are thus defined by the risks for supply shortage and their impacts on emerging technologies. Availability reflects firstly considerations on distribution and abundance of critical minerals and secondly knowledge of efficient extraction and processing methods. This session focuses on research into sulphide and oxide mineralogy and geochemistry as well as mineral technology, and will explore recent advances in both fundamental and applied studies across a wide range of areas involved in the formation of ore-grade concentrations of critical minerals, as well as the application of mineralogical and geochemical methods to exploration, ore dressing, and waste management.
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