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Bowling Green State University (2010)

Application of Remote Sensing for Gold Exploration in the Nuba Mountains, Sudan

Kujjo, Cosmas P.

Titre : Application of Remote Sensing for Gold Exploration in the Nuba Mountains, Sudan

Auteur : Kujjo, Cosmas P.

Université de soutenance : Bowling Green State University

Grade : Master of Science (MS), 2010

Résumé
Gold exploration in the Sudan has been known since Pharaonic times (3,000 years), but the sparse population and inhospitable climate caused the prospecting to be sporadic and ephemeral in manner. Despite the earlier exploration for minerals in the Sudan, there still are no proper estimates of reserves and many mineral occurrences remain unexploited due to inappropriate prospecting methods (GRAS, 1990). The proper use of mineral exploration methods was delayed until the 1970’s, during which the Sudanese Geological Survey located more than 50 gold-producing sites. Subsequently, joint ventures between Sudan and foreign companies in the 1980’s have provided opportunities for the application of modern technologies to gold exploration. Consequently, substantial discoveries of gold deposits in the Red Sea Hills encouraged the search for gold, not only in areas of quartz veins, but also in rocks associated with gossans. The present study is aimed at utilizing remote sensing technology for gold exploration through an approach of establishing a relationship between the known deposits in the Red Sea Hills and similar occurrences in the Nuba Mountains, Sudan. The multispectral remotely sensing datasets that have been used in this research are comprised of the LANDSAT Enhanced Thematic Mapping (ETM+) and the Advanced Space borne Thermal Emission and Reflection Radiometer (ASTER). The applied enhancements techniques included color composite, band ratioing, principal components analysis (PCA), and spatial filtering. Multispectral remote sensing (LANDSAT+ and ASTER) image enhancement and interpretation proved to be useful in identification, detection, and delineation of lithological rock units, hydrothermal alterations, and geologic structures associated with auriferous sulphides deposits in the research area of the Nuba Mountains, Sudan. The results indicated matching of hydrothermal alteration zones with the locations of known base metals (Cu, Zn, and Ni) in the area, which were mostly located in the vicinity of Jebel Kurun in the SE, Jebel Tumluk , Jebel Umm Takatik, Jebel Uru, and along the flanks of a domal feature that was identified by mapping of geologic lineaments in the study area.

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