GEOL342-23S1 (C) Semester One 2023

Special Topic

15 points

Start Date: Monday, 20 February 2023
End Date: Sunday, 25 June 2023
Withdrawal Dates
Last Day to withdraw from this course:
  • Without financial penalty (full fee refund): Sunday, 5 March 2023
  • Without academic penalty (including no fee refund): Sunday, 14 May 2023


Students may only enrol in this Special Topic course on the advice of the Department of Geological Sciences.


This course deals with Resource Geology as it relates to Metallic and Non-Metallic Materials, and Environmental Management implications of their extraction. It complements GEOL338 Engineering and Mining Geology, which together provide a “package” of Applied Geology papers for the graduating geologist. GEOL342 is a part replacement for the ore geology part of GEOL337 Geothermal and Ore Exploration, which is now discontinued.

Term One deals with “everyday minerals and non-metallic deposits”, including aggregates, armourstone, cement and lime applications, clays and ceramic products, brine-sourced chemicals, and renewable and non-renewable energy sources. Laboratories focus on aggregates, cement and lime stabilisation as methods for improving the durability characteristics of natural materials. There is an ‘in-class’ visit to a local producing aggregate quarry.

Term Two deals with “metalliferous ore deposits and exploration”. Principal focus is on hydrothermal ore fluids and systems covering a range of igneous and metamorphic environments, including ore microscopy. The exploration component deals with remote sensing methods, soil and stream sediment sampling, and target drilling to establish ore reserves. There is a brief summary of mining methods and the related environmental management implications.


Subject to approval of the Head of Department

Course Coordinator / Lecturer

David Bell


Assessment Due Date Percentage 
Aggregate descriptions & quarry flowsheet 15%
Cement-Stabilised Sand Exercise 10%
Lime-Stablisied Loess Exercise 10%
Tui Mine Review Report 20%
Geochemical Exploration Exercise 15%
Final Examination 30%

Additional Course Outline Information

Weekly Topics

Term 1 – Everyday Minerals & Non-Metallic Deposits

Lecture 1 – Resource Geology – An Introductory Overview
Lecture 2 – Aggregates & Armourstone – Essential Materials
Lecture 3 – Armourstone in Marlborough – the NIMBY Syndrome
Lecture 4 – Roading Aggregates & Pavement Construction
Lecture 5 – Portland Cement & Concrete Manufacture/Testing
Lecture 6 – Quicklime & Hydrated Lime Applications
Lecture 7 – Clays, Ceramics & Brick/Tile Manufacture
Lecture 8 – Brines, Solar Salt & Chemical Applications
Lecture 9 – Non-Renewable Energy Resources & Uses
Lecture 10 – Renewable Energy Resources: the Future?
Lecture 11 – Extractive Industries & Quarrying Principles
Lecture 12 – Environmental Management & Key Issues

Term 2 – Metalliferous Ore Deposits & Exploration

Lecture 13 – Overview of Metalliferous Ore-Forming Processes
Lecture 14 – Ore Fluid Sources & Hydrothermal Systems
Lecture 15 – Ore Fluid Migration & Metallic Mineral Deposition
Lecture 16 – Porphyry Copper Systems & Ore Deposition
Lecture 17 – Mesothermal & Epithermal Gold-Silver Systems
Lecture 18 – Metamorphic Hydrothermal Systems & Deposits
Lecture 19 – Weathering & Supergene Enrichment of Ores
Lecture 20 – Geochemical and Geophysical Exploration Techniques
Lecture 21 – Geochemical Data Analysis & Presentation
Lecture 22 – Grade Estimation & Ore Resource Definition
Lecture 23 – Mining Methods & Ore Recovery Techniques
Lecture 24 – Environmental Issues & Mine Site Rehabilitation

Term 1 – Laboratories (Non-Metallics)

Week 1 – Description of Common Aggregate Materials
Week 2 – Local Quarry Visit (Isaac or Fulton Hogan)
Week 3 – Aggregate Compaction Laboratory Exercise
Week 4 – Hydraulic Conductivity Laboratory Exercise
Week 5 – Testing of Cement Stabilised Sand
Week 6 – Testing of Lime Stabilised Loess

Term 2 – Laboratories (Ore Minerals)

Week 7 – Introduction to Ore Microscopy & Ore Minerals
Week 8 – Tui Mine Exercise & Report (1)
Week 9 – Tui Mine Exercise & Report (2)
Week 10 – Exploration Geochemistry Data Analysis
Week 11 – Exploration Target Exercise (1)
Week 12 – Exploration Target Exercise (2)

Indicative Fees

Domestic fee $951.00

International fee $4,750.00

* All fees are inclusive of NZ GST or any equivalent overseas tax, and do not include any programme level discount or additional course-related expenses.

For further information see School of Earth and Environment .

All GEOL342 Occurrences

  • GEOL342-23S1 (C) Semester One 2023