Paper No. 2
Presentation Time: 8:25 AM
WEATHERING AND ITS INFLUENCE ON REGOLITH MAPPING IN MINERAL EXPLORATION: A CASE STUDY ON THE MANSO AMENFI GOLD PROJECT IN THE WESTERN REGION OF GHANA
Although weathering has contributed to the discovery of large economic mineral deposits globally. However, other mineral deposits have also been neglected due to subtle geochemical responses obtained in complex geological environments and the lack of understanding the landforms and regolith environments. Weathering gradually weakens rocks and eventually produces new geological materials that are more stable in the new environment and may be quite different from the underlying rocks. In Ghana and other tropical regions weathering is affected by both physical (geomorphology) and chemical changes under favourable conditions. Hence, the knowledge of landscape and sampling approach can greatly enhance regolith mapping in gold mining exploration. In this study, field samples were used to create regolith maps to evaluate soil data on the Manso Amenfi gold project in the Western Region of Ghana. This was done by pitting and sampling on some selected soil geochemical profile lines. The sampling was controlled by various regolith horizons and for each horizon, samples were taken from preserved residuals, mottled zones, transported sandy soil, sap rock and degraded laterite materials. The regolith map was superimposed on a soil geochemical map for further analysis. Results showed a clear distinction between false and real anomalies and a strong positive correlation between the soil results and the regolith map. Evidentially, this study reinforces the concept of incorporating regolith mapping into all mineral exploration methods.