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New life for old metal mines

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That is why researchers have developed sophisticated 3D models. They are aimed at helping to better understand the complex geology that envelopes the ore. What you see here in red are what we call reflective zones, underground regions whose material has a different density from the surrounding bedrock. That different density is one of the properties of the ore we are looking for. So these 3D maps help us to precisely spot those regions and calculate angles and distances for more accurate exploration drilling Diamond drilling is a very expensive business. So if you can get more robust computer models, so you need to drill less holes in order to target the mineral spots, then you will reduce the expenses needed to drill those deep holes. What we can describe in a 3D model like this is the rocks units, structures which could be important for guiding where ores are located in the crust. So it is all about chemical and physical properties of the rocks.

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2011, Bogolyubov Institute for Theorethical Physics