Wednesday 13 June 2012

Backyard Geology

Our property lies directly on an interesting geological formation.
I suppose that, depending on your preferences, any geology is interesting.
However, around here, much of the bedrock is exposed,
and offers a unique view of the past.

The prospecting of this area took place many years ago, and though it holds precious stones and ores, there isn't enough to make it commerciall viable.
What they did find was a great deal of valuable research material as well as some major deposits of sulphide ore.
Without going into detail, (which I won't be able to do anyways), the conditions here are analogous of what prospecters would encounter when searching for rich sources of valuable metals; which also indicate the likelihood of other sought after materials.
In particular, the sulphides are very prominent, and have been located and mapped decades ago.

A company developing electronic prospecting equipment chose to use this site to test their new product.
The idea being that they already know exactly what is in the ground, and will verify and adjust their gear so that it is able to properly identify similar features when prospecting unknown terrain.

This gave us the opportunity to learn something about the geology of our property.

We already knew that we live on a greenstone belt that contains a wide variety of elements.
It is an area that was once under tremendous pressure.
What we didn't know was that the exposed rocks here are a source of information that has helped develop the theory of the early continental divides and plate tectonics.
To be truthful, I really don't understand much of the detail.
But that gives us something new to search out.
As a result of the numerous research papers written about our local geology, there is an abundance of reference literature for us to dig into whenever we wish to know more.
It will be especially fun for the kids, as it provides a perfect vehicle for hands-on geology.
And it will be fun for me too.
The kid in me is eager to go rock hunting, and to learn more about what makes the bedrock here so special.


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