This list has been edited to conform in general to actual usage in the body of this report. However, the inclusion of a technical term in this glossary does not necessarily mean that it appears in the body of this report, and no imputation should be drawn. Investors should refer to more comprehensive dictionaries of geology in printed form or available in the internet for a complete glossary.
Adamellite A granitic rock containing 10-50% quartz and with an alkali feldspar to total feldspar ratio between 35% and 65%. aeromagnetic survey Systematic measurement and collection, from an aircraft, of the earth’s magnetic field at regular intervals. Ag The chemical symbol for silver.
Alkali feldspar A feldspar rich in sodium or potassium.
Alluvial deposit A mineral deposit consisting of recent surface sediments laid down by water.
Alteration The change in the mineral composition of a rock, commonly due to hydrothermal activity
Amphibolite A crystalline rock consisting mainly of amphibole and plagioclase with little or no quartz.
AnalogousCorresponding in function, but not evolved from.
Andesite A fine-grained, dark-coloured extrusive rock.
Anomaly A departure from the expected or normal background.
Aplite A fine-grained, sugary-textured rock consisting essentially of quartz and alkali feldspar. Commonly occurs as dykes or sills in granites.
Archean An era of geological time from 2500 million years to 3800 million years.
Arenite A general name for consolidated sedimentary rocks composed of sandstone-size fragments regardless of whether the grains are quartz sand or not (they could be limestone, feldspar etc.).
Argillite A weakly metamorphosed compact rock, derived from mudstone or shale.
ArsenicElement with symbol As and atomic number 33 that occurs in many minerals, usually in conjunction with sulphur and metals. Commonly associated with gold.
Arsenopyrite A steely-grey metallic mineral with the formula FeAsS. The principal ore of arsenic
Assay Analyse (an ore, alloy, etc.) in order to determine the quantity of gold, silver, or other metal in it.
Au The chemical symbol for gold.
AugenLenticular eye-shaped mineral grains or mineral aggregates visible in some foliated metamorphic rocks.
AusIMM Australasian Institute of Mining and Metallurgy.
Basalt A dark-coloured igneous rock.
Base-metal A non-precious metal, usually referring to copper, lead and zinc.
Batholith A large mass of igneous rock that has more than 100 sq km of surface exposure.
Bi The chemical symbol for bismuth.
BiotiteCommon phyllosilicate mineral within the mica group, with the approximate chemical formula K(Mg,Fe)3AlSi3O10(F,OH)2.
BismuthChemical element with symbol Bi and atomic number 83. Bismuth, a pentavalent poor metal, chemically resembles arsenic and antimony.
Breccia A rock composed of angular rock fragments.
Calcalkaline Igneous rocks containing calcium-rich feldspar.
Calc-silicate A metamorphic rock composed mainly of calcium-bearing silicates; formed from the metamorphism of impure limestone or dolomite.
Cambrian A period of geological time approximately from 506 million years to 544 million years.
Carapace A hard shell on the outer surface of a body.
Carboniferous A period of geological time approximately from 295 million years to 355 million years.
Cassiterite The principal ore of tin with the chemical formula SnO2.
Chalcopyrite A mineral of copper with the chemical formula CuFeS2.
Complex An assemblage of rocks of various ages and origins intricately mixed together.
Conglomerate A sedimentary rock formed by the cementing together of water-rounded pebbles, distinct from a breccia.
CoreContinuous cylindrical rock sample collected from diamond drilling.Most core samples are obtained by drilling with special drills into rock, with a hollow steel tube called a core drill.
Craton A major part of the Earth’s crust that has been stable and little deformed for a long time.
Cretaceous A period of geological time approximately from 65 million years to 135 million years .
Cu The chemical symbol for copper.
Cupola An upward projection of an igneous intrusion into its roof.
Cut-off grade Level of mineral in an ore below which it is not economically feasible to mine it. The mill cutoff grade is the level below which already mined ore is not worth processing. The mine cut-off grade is estimated or chosen during a mining feasibility study.
Cyanidation Metallurgical technique for extracting gold from low-grade ore by converting the gold to a water soluble complex.
Dacite A fine-grained extrusive rock composed mainly of plagioclase, quartz and pyroxene or hornblende or both. It is the extrusive equivalent of granodiorite.
Devonian A period of geological time approximately from 355 million years to 410 million years .
Diamond drilling Rotary drilling technique using diamond set or impregnated bits, to cut a solid, continuous core sample of the rock. The core sample is retrieved to the surface, in a core barrel, by a wire line.
Differentiation The process by which rocks develop layers of different composition.
Diorite A plutonic rock intermediate in composition between acidic and basic, consisting essentially of plagioclase and mafic minerals.
Disseminated Scattered distribution of generally fine-grained metallic minerals throughout a rock.
Doleritemafic, holocrystalline, subvolcanic rock equivalent to volcanic basalt or plutonic gabbro.
Dyke A tabular igneous intrusion that cuts across the bedding or other planar structures in the host rock.
EnstatiteMagnesium endmember of the pyroxene silicate mineral series enstatite (MgSiO3) - ferrosilite (FeSiO3).
Equigranular A textural term applied to a rock in which the constituent grains are all about the same size.
Extrusive Igneous rock that has been erupted on to the surface of the earth.
Fe The chemical symbol for iron.
Felsic Light coloured rocks containing an abundance of feldspars and quartz.
Feldspar A group of alumino-silcate minerals that constitute around 60% of the earth’s crust.
Foliation A planar arrangement of textural or structural features in any type of rock.
Fractionation, Fractional CrystallizationCrystallization from a magma in which early-formed crystals are separated, e.g. by gravity settling, resulting in a series of residual liquids that are more concentrated than normal.
Gabbro A coarse-grained intrusive igneous rock composed chiefly of plagioclase feldspar and pyroxene.
Garnet A group of variously coloured silicate minerals, commonly found as well-formed crystals in metamorphic rocks.
GeochemistryThe science that uses the tools and principles of chemistry to explain the mechanisms behind major geological systems such as the Earth's crust and its oceans.
GIS Geographic Information System. A system devised to present spatial data in a series of compatible and interactive layers.
GneissTypical rock type formed by regional metamorphism, in which a sedimentary or igneous rock has been deeply buried and subjected to high temperatures and pressures.
Gold Dense, soft, shiny, malleable and ductile metal and is a chemical element with the symbol Au and atomic number 79.
Graben An elongate, relatively depressed crustal unit or block that is bounded by faults on its long sides.
Granite Broadly applied to any holocrystalline plutonic rock containing quartz, feldspar and biotite.
Granitoid A general term to describe coarse-grained, felsic intrusive plutonic rocks, resembling granite.
Granodiorite A coarse-grained granitic rock containing quartz, feldspar and biotite.
Granulite A coarse granular metamorphic rock.
Granulite facies A metamorphic zone resulting from deep-seated regional dynamothermal metamorphism, in temperatures >650oC.
Graphic Rock texture that results from regular intergrowth of quartz and feldspar crystals, producing the effect of cuneiform writing.
Gravity Survey Systematic measurement and collection of the earth’s gravitational field at the surface at regular intervals. Used to discern different rock types based on associated variations with differences in the distribution of densities, and hence rock types.
Greenfields ExplorationExploration is termed either Greenfields or Brownfields depending on the extent to which previous exploration has been conducted on the tenements in question. Greenfields alludes to unspoilt grass, and brownfields to that which has been trodden on repeatedly. While loosely defined, the general meaning of brownfields exploration is that which is conducted within geological terrain within close proximity to known ore deposits. Greenfields are the remainder.
Greenschist A schistose metamorphic rock which owes its green colour and schistosity to abundant chlorite and lesser epidote and/or actinolite.
Greenstone belt Zones of variably metamorphosed mafic to ultramafic volcanic sequences with associated sedimentary rocks that occur within Archaean and Proterozoic cratons between granite and gneiss bodies.
Greisen A granitic rock, altered by gaseous emanations, composed largely of quartz, mica and topaz.
Greywacke A texturally immature sedimentary rock containing larger grains in a fine-grained matrix of clay-and silt-sized particles.
G/t A shorthand form of grams per tonne, equivalent to parts per million, used in measuring the quantity of precious metals (Au, Ag etc) in material.
Hematite A common iron mineral, chemical formula Fe2O3, the principal ore of iron.
Hydrothermal Generally used for any hot water, sometimes but not always of magmatic origin.
Igneous rock A rock that solidified from magma.
Intermediate Igneous rocks whose composition is intermediate between felsic and mafic rocks.
IntersectionInterval of rock sampled by drilling that has been analysed for metals of interest.
Intrusion The process of emplacement of a magma into pre-existing rock.
Intrusive General term for a solidified magma.
I-type graniteA granite that results from igneous magmatic processes.
Joint ventureBusiness agreement in which parties agree to develop, for a finite time, a project by contributing equity. The joint venture exercise control over the enterprise and consequently share revenues, expenses and assets.
Jurassic A period of geological time approximately from 135 million years to 203 million years .
K The chemical symbol for potassium.
Leuco- Light-coloured; applied to igneous rocks containing <30% mafic minerals.
Lithology The description of rock on the basis of such characteristics as colour, mineral composition, grain size etc.
Mafic A dark-coloured rock composed dominantly of magnesium, iron and calcium-rich rock-forming silicates, and for rocks in which these minerals are abundant.
Magma Naturally occurring molten rock, generated within the earth.
Magnetic anomalies Zones where the magnitude and orientation of the earth’s magnetic field differs from adjacent areas.
Magnetic survey Systematic collection of readings of the earth’s magnetic field. The data are collected on the surface or from aircraft.
Mantle The zone in the earth between the crust and the core.
Massive sulphides Rock containing abundant sulphides that constitutes close to 100% of the rock mass.
Mesothermal Mineral deposits formed (precipitated) at moderate temperatures.
Mesozoic An era of geological time approximately from 65 million years to 248 million years .
Metallogenic province An area characterised by one or more characteristic types of mineralisation.
Metallogeny The study of the genesis of mineral deposits.'
MetallurgyMaterials science that studies the physical and chemical behaviour of metallic elements, their intermetallic compounds, and their mixtures, which are called alloys. It is also the technology of metals: the way in which science is applied to their practical use.
Metamorphism Changes in solid rocks in response to physical and chemical conditions that differ from those under which the rocks originated.
Metasediment A sedimentary rock that shows evidence of having been subjected to metamorphism.
Meteoric waterWater derived from the earth’s atmosphere.
Miarolitic A term applied to small irregular cavities in igneous rocks, especially granites, into which crystals of the rock-forming minerals protrude.
Mica A group of minerals characterised by their perfect cleavage which enables them to be split into thin elastic lamellae.
Microgranite A rock of granitic composition but whose crystals are only visible under the microscope.
MicronOne-millionth of a metre.
Migmatisation Partial injection of igneous magma into pre-existing rock such that the result is a mixture of igneous and metamorphic bands or segregations.
MineralisationDeposition of economically important metals in the formation of ore bodies or lodes.
Mo The chemical symbol for molybdenum.
MolybedenumGroup 6 chemical element with the symbol Mo and atomic number 42.Molybdenum does not occur naturally as a free metal on Earth, but rather in various oxidation states in minerals. The free element, which is a silvery metal with a gray cast, has the sixth-highest melting point of any element. It readily forms hard, stable carbides in alloys, and for this reason most of world production of the element (about 80%) is in making many types of steel alloys, including high strength alloys and superalloys.
Molybdenite The main ore of molybdenum; a lead-grey hexagonal mineral with composition MoS2.
Monzogranite A granular plutonic rock with a composition between monzonite and granite.
Monzonite A group of plutonic rocks containing approximately equal amounts of alkali feldspar and plagioclase, little or no quartz, and commonly augite as the main dark mineral.
Muscovite A colourless to pale brown member of the mica group of minerals.
Na The chemical symbol for sodium.
Neoproterozoic An era of geological time approximately from 544 million years to 1000 million years .
Open cutOpen-pit mining, open-cut mining or opencast mining is a method of extracting rock or minerals from the earth by their removal from an open pit or open cut.
Ordovician An era of geological time approximately from 435 million years to 500 million years .
Orogeny The process of formation of mountains.
Oxide Pertaining to weathered or oxidised rock.
Palaeoproterozoic An era of geological time approximately from 1600 million years to 2500 million years .
Palaeozoic An era of geological time approximately from 600 million years to 230 million years .
Paragneiss A gneiss presumed to have been formed from an original sedimentary rock.
Pegmatite An exceptionally coarse-grained igneous rock.
Pelite A sediment or sedimentary rock composed of the finest detritus (clay or mud-sized particles).
Penecontemporaneous Formed at almost the same time.
Peralkaline Rocks in which the molecular proportion of alumina is less than that of the Na and K oxides combined.
Peraluminous Rocks in which the molecular proportion of alumina exceeds that of the Na and K oxides combined.
Permian An era of geological time approximately from 248 million years to 295 million years .
Phyllite A metamorphosed rock, intermediate in grade between slate and schist.
Plagioclase A group of feldspars ranging in composition from NaAlSi3O8 to CaAl2Si2O8.
Pluton An igneous intrusion.
Porphyritic; porphyry Describes igneous rocks containing relatively large crystals set in a finer-grained groundmass.
Porphyroblastic Metamorphic texture characterised by large crystals within a fine-grained groundmass.
Porphyry copper deposit A large body of rock, typically porphyritic, containing disseminated chalcopyrite and other sulphide minerals, often including molybdenite. Most are relatively low grade and bulk mined on a large scale.
Ppb Parts per billion.
Ppm Parts per million (quantitative equivalent of g/t).
Proterozoic An era of geological time approximately from 544 million years to 2500 million years .
Pyrite A common iron sulphide mineral with the chemical formula FeS2.
PyroxeneGroup of important rock-forming inosilicate minerals found in many igneous and metamorphic rocks. Pyroxenes have the general formula XY(Si,Al)2O6 (where X represents calcium, sodium, iron+2 and magnesium and more rarely zinc, manganese and lithium and Y represents ions of smaller size, such as chromium, aluminium, iron+3, magnesium, manganese, scandium, titanium, vanadium and even iron+2). Although aluminium substitutes extensively for silicon in silicates such as feldspars and amphiboles, the substitution occurs only to a limited extent in most pyroxenes.
Pyrrhotite A common iron sulphide mineral with the chemical formula FeS.
Quartz Crystalline silica, an important rock-forming mineral with the chemical formula SiO2.
Radiometric survey Systematic collection of radioactivity emitted by rocks at or near the earth’s surface; usually collected by helicopter or fixed wing aircraft.
RC drilling Reverse Circulation drilling - a method of rotary drilling in which the sample is returned to the surface, using compressed air, inside the inner-tube of the drill-rod. A more accurate drilling technique than simple percussion drilling, the RC technique minimises contamination.
Refractory Descriptive of ore difficult to treat for recovery of valuable minerals.
Resource classification Mineral resource classification' is the classification of mineral deposits based on their geologic certainty and economic value.Inferred Mineral Resource is that part of a mineral resource for which tonnage, grade and mineral content can be estimated with a low level of confidence. It is inferred from geological evidence and assumed but not verified geological/or grade continuity. It is based on information gathered through appropriate techniques from location such as outcrops, trenches, pits, workings and drill holes which may be of limited or uncertain quality and reliability. Indicated resources are simply economic mineral occurrences that have been sampled (from locations such as outcrops, trenches, pits and drillholes) to a point where an estimate has been made, at a reasonable level of confidence, of their contained metal, grade, tonnage, shape, densities, physical characteristics. Measured resources are indicated resources that have undergone enough further sampling that a 'competent person' (defined by the norms of the relevant mining code; usually a geologist) has declared them to be an acceptable estimate, at a high degree of confidence, of the grade, tonnage, shape, densities, physical characteristics and mineral content of the mineral occurrence. Resources may also make up portions of a mineral deposit classified as a mineral reserve.
Rhyolite A volcanic rock composed chiefly of potassium feldspar and quartz.
Rift basin A large fault-bound depression, in-filled with volcanic and/or sedimentary material.
S The chemical symbol for sulphur.
Schist A strongly foliated metamorphic rock.
SericiteFine grained mica, similar to muscovite, illite, or paragonite. Sericite is a common alteration mineral of orthoclase or plagioclase feldspars in areas that have been subjected to hydrothermal alteration typically associated with copper, tin, or other hydrothermal ore deposits.
Shale A fine-grained detrital sedimentary rock, formed by the compaction of clay, silt or mud.
Shear zone A zone in which rocks have been deformed primarily in a ductile manner in response to applied stress.
Si The chemical symbol for silicon.
Silicified The alteration or replacement of primary minerals by silica.
SilicaChemical compound silicon dioxide is an oxide of silicon with the chemical formula SiO2. It has been known for its hardness since ancient times. Silica is most commonly found in nature as sand or quartz, as well as in the cell walls of diatoms.
Sill A tabular igneous intrusion that parallels the planar structure of the surrounding rock.
Silurian An era of geological time approximately from 410 million years to 435 million years .
Skarn A thermally metamorphosed impure limestone.
Sn The chemical symbol for tin.
Soil sampling The collection of soil specimens for mineral analysis.
SpinelThe spinels are any of a class of minerals of general formulation A2+B23+O42- which crystallise in the cubic (isometric) crystal system.
Stock A pluton that is less than 100 sq km in surface exposure, is usually but not always discordant, and resembles a batholith except in size.
Stockwork A network of (usually) quartz veinlets produced during pervasive brittle fracture.
Stratabound Occurring within and parallel to the rock strata, but not necessarily deposited at the same time.
Stratiform Occurring within and parallel to the rock strata, and deposited at the same time.
Stream sampling The collection of stream sediments for mineral analysis.
Strike The direction or bearing of a geological structure on a level surface, perpendicular to the direction of dip.
Stringer A small, thin discontinuous or irregular veinlet.
S-type granite A granite that results from extreme melting of sedimentary rock.
Subvolcanic Igneous rock formed close to the surface, but which has not flowed out across the surface.
SulphideClass of minerals containing sulphide (S2−) as the major anion. Some sulphide minerals are economically important as metal ores.
Syncline A basin-shaped fold.
T, tpa Metric tonne, tonnes per annum.
Te The chemical symbol for tellurium.
Tectonics The processes that create the broad architecture of the surface of the earth.
Tectonism A general term for all movement of the crust produced by tectonic processes.
Telluride A mineral compound that is a combination of tellurium (chemical symbol Te) with another metal.
Tertiary Applied to the first period of the Cainozoic era, 1.8million years to 65million years .
Terrane A crustal block or fragment that preserves a distinctive geologic history that is different from the surrounding areas.
Th The chemical symbol for thorium.
TholeiiticThe tholeiitic magma series, named after the German town Tholey, is one of two main magma series in igneous rocks, the other magma series being the calc–alkaline. A magma series is a series of compositions that describes the evolution of a mafic magma, which is high in magnesium and iron and produces basalt or gabbro.
Tonalite A coarse grained plutonic rock similar to diorite in composition but containing quartz as 5% to 20% of the light coloured minerals.
Transcurrent fault A large-scale strike-slip fault in which the fault surface is steeply inclined or vertical.
TungstenChemical element with the chemical symbol W and atomic number 74. A hard, rare metal under standard conditions when uncombined, tungsten is found naturally on Earth only in chemical compounds.Its important ores include wolframite and scheelite. The free element is remarkable for its robustness, especially the fact that it has the highest melting point of all the non-alloyed metals and the second highest of all the elements after carbon.The unalloyed elemental form is used mainly in electrical applications. Tungsten's many alloys have numerous applications, most notably in incandescent light bulb filaments, X-ray tubes (as both the filament and target), electrodes in TIG welding, and superalloys. Tungsten's hardness and high density give it military applications in penetrating projectiles. Tungsten compounds are most often used industrially as catalysts.
Turbidite A sediment deposited by a bottom-flowing current laden with suspended mud, sand and rock debris, moving swiftly down a sub-aqueous slope and spreading horizontally on the floor of a body of water. The result is a sediment characterised by graded bedding, moderate sorting and laminations.
Triassic Applied to the first period of the Mesozoic era, 203million years to 248million years .
U The chemical symbol for uranium.
Ultramafic Igneous rocks consisting essentially of ferro-magnesium minerals with trace quartz and feldspar.
Volcanoclastic Refers to all clastic sediments composed mainly of particles of volcanic origin, regardless of how the sediment formed.
Volcanism The processes by which magma and its associated gases rise through the crust and are extruded on to the earth’s surface and into the atmosphere.
Volcanogenic Formed by processes directly connected to volcanism.
W The chemical symbol for tungsten.
Western Gneiss TerraneSeries of polydeformed high-grade early Archaean metamorphic belts, composed predominantly of feldspathic leucocratic granulite gneisses, which represent some of the oldest crustal fragments on Earth.
Yilgarn CratonLarge craton which constitutes the bulk of the Western Australian land mass. It is bounded by a mixture of sedimentary basins and Proterozoic fold and thrust belts.