In our last Shaping Change blog, we discussed how MineSight Implicit Modeler empowers geologists to spend more time doing geology. Part 2 offers a practical example of where MineSight Implicit Modeler might be used.
Most geological models are built from a combination of surface mapping and drillhole logs. By its very nature, this data is often sparse and incomplete, so the geologist must make interpretive decisions about the sub-surface geological structure. This interpretation is often based on several factors such as local knowledge and experience, as well as a fair bit of guess work. If we can apply our interpretive skills to areas where the sample quality or quantity is poor rather than in dense data areas, we can significantly reduce the time spent building these models.
Consider the following example. We have an old, hand-drawn map of the surface geology and some modern drillholes. The bright green intervals on the holes match the manually interpreted contact quite well.
Traditional methods to model this surface would be to work in 2D sections, digitizing strings and linking them together manually to produce a surface. This can take a lot of time and is very subjective. It also doesn’t allow us to easily model past the known data points. This is one of the problems MineSight Implicit Modeler was developed to solve.
If we run the Implicit Modeler over this data twice, once with no control points and once with a few manually digitized points, we get the following results:
The first run on the left matches the known data well, but drifts away from the manual interpretation away from the data. In the second run, we added four extra points manually and you can see the effect this has on the results. Both surfaces took just three seconds to build – much quicker than drawing and modifying strings manually.
This is obviously a very basic example, but in a more complex model, the ability to only add manual points where needed, away from known data, can save a huge amount of time. The geologist can spend more time analyzing the data and thinking about what might be going on.
In Part 3, we will look at how MineSight Implicit Modeler can be used to generate multiple geological models very quickly and how it could save a company millions of dollars.
Empowering geologists with the ability to save time and money – that’s shaping smart change.
Product Manager, Operations
Guest Blogger Profile:
Mark spent eight years as an exploration and mine geologist, becoming Senior Mine Geologist at Newmont’s Groundrush operations in Australia’s Northern Territory. Mark has since worked in mining software as a technical services manager and regional business development manager. He is now the product manager for MineSight’s Operational products and a senior advisor for Geological products.