Image (below): Part of the Grasberg Pit, Indonesia.
Porter GeoConsultancy continued its International Study Tour series of professional development courses by visiting a selection of the world's key super porphyry copper/gold deposits as two separate modules six months apart in October 2003 and April-May 2004 respectively.
Visits were made to the following mines/projects:
MODULE 2, The Western Pacific - 24 April to 11 May, 2004 incorporated a representative selection of the significant porphyry copper and gold deposits in Australia, Indonesia, China and Mongolia.
The program allowed participants to compare and contrast a selection of giant deposits with a range of ages, grades, tectonic settings and metal associations.
Participants were able to take any 5 or more consecutive days of their choosing up to the total 18 days of the full program, as fitted their specific requirements and availability.
- Erdenet, Cu, Mo - northern Mongolia
- Oyu Tolgoi, Cu, Au - southern Mongolia
- Dexing, Cu, Mo, Au - Jiangxi, south-eastern China
- Batu Hijau, Cu, Au - Sumbawa, Indonesia
- Grasberg / Ertsberg, Cu, Au - West Papua, Indonesia
- Field Workshop, Lachlan Fold Belt - NSW, Australia
- Cadia & Ridgeway, Au, Cu - New South Wales, Australia
Image: (below) Part of the giant Chuquicamata Pit, Chile.
MODULE 1, South America - 12 to 25 October, 2003 commenced in SANTIAGO, Chile on the evening of Saturday 11 October and ended just over 14 days later in LIMA, Peru, early on the morning of Sunday 26 October.
Visits were made to the following mines:
Participants were able to take any 5 or more consecutive days of their choosing up to the total 14 days of the full program, as fitted their specific requirements and availability.
This module took in TEN of the most important porphyry deposits/mineralised systems, representing the different styles of mineralisation, spread over the interval from near Santiago in Chile in the south, to northern Peru.
The schedule included the great hypogene deposits, the giant supergene blankets and oxide orebodies, the low pyrite mines and porphyry-skarn ore.
- Los Bronces, Chile - La Disputada (Anglo American)
- Los Pelambres, Chile - Antofagasta PLC
- El Teniente, Chile - Codelco Chile
- Chuquicamata, Chile - Codelco Chile
- Escondida, Chile - Minera Escondida (BHP Billiton / Rio Tinto)
- Zaldivar, Chile - Minera Zaldivar (Placer Dome)
- Spence, Chile - BHP Billiton
- El Salvador, Chile - Codelco Chile
- Collahuasi, Chile - Minera Dona Ines de Collahuasi (Falconbridge / Anglo American)
- Cuajone, Peru - Southern Peru Copper Corp (Grupo Mexico)
- Antamina, Peru - Minera Antamina (BHP Billiton / Noranda / Teck Corp / Mitsubishi)
The program also included a geological traverse across the Andean volcano-intrusive belt and a visit to an undeveloped super porphyry (Spence) to illustrate surface and drill indications of ore and what these deposits look like before there is a big hole in the ground and associated infrastructure.
This module was specially timed to immediately follow the 10th Chilean Geological Congress in Concepcion Chile, from 6 to 10 October, which included two day seminars on Andean Metallogenesis and The Giant Porphyry Copper Deposits of the Andes. Participants were encouraged to attend these seminars to gain valuable background to what they were to see on tour.
While the primary focus of the tour was geological, attention was also devoted to the mining, metallurgical and economic aspects of each operation as required by the participants.
Tour participants were from around the world representing a range of companies. They brought a breadth of knowledge and international experience that broadened and enriched the discussion and greatly enhanced the tour as the group travelled together and viewed the deposits visited from their varying perspectives and backgrounds.
Maximum impact, minimum time - In recognition of the value of the time of key staff, the duration of the tour was kept to a minimum, being divided into two compact modules with allowance for taking smaller parts of each module, while including maximum content. All mine visits, workshops, surface and air travel and accommodation on tour were arranged by PGC.
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This tour was designed, developed, organised, managed and escorted by
T M (Mike) Porter of Porter GeoConsultancy Pty Ltd.