My Blogs (olelog) are mainly based on my daily reading of earth science news.
Here on whatonearth.olehnielsen.dk I try to weave some of the pieces together to a greater whole with added background info.
The Lihir gold mine is on the island of Lihir, in Papua New Guinea’s (PNG) New Ireland Province, about 700km north east of Port Moresby.
Lihir Island consists of five miocene-pleistocene volcanic units, of which three are volcanic calderas and two are sequences of mafic volcanic rock that predate the three volcanoes. Remnant geothermal activity is present in the Luise caldera, evidenced by hot springs and fumeroles. The orebody is contained in a hydrothermally-altered porphyry gold system with the gold hosted in volcanics, intrusives and breccias within the caldera. The majority of the gold is contained in sulphides. Currently defined gold mineralisation occurs near the centre of the caldera. Exploration since 1983 has defined several adjacent and partly overlapping deposits
Lihir is an open-pit mine consisting of two adjacent overlapping pits. With the current reserve, mining will take place for 13 years. This will be processed during the following 17 years, giving a total projected life of 30 years. Hydrothermal activity and a high water table create a major water problem and the water table is lowered by borehole pumping. The mine produced 11.0Mt of ore in 2003, and the mining rate is being raised to 46Mt/y of ore and waste to compensate for future lower ore grades. http://www.mining-technology.com/projects/lihir/
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