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Geological Mapping and Gold Prospecting of Wadi Umm Beckol-Wadi Akasha Area, Northern Sudan Based on Remote Sensing
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Volume 2, 2015
Issue 6 (November)
Pages: 171-178   |   Vol. 2, No. 6, November 2015   |   Follow on         
Paper in PDF Downloads: 100   Since Oct. 24, 2015 Views: 2219   Since Oct. 24, 2015
Babiker I. S., Department of Geology, University of Khartoum, Khartoum, Sudan.
Elsayed Zeinelabdein K. A., Department of Geology, Faculty of Petroleum and Minerals, Alneelain University, Khartoum, Sudan.
El Nadi A. H., Department of Geology, University of Khartoum, Khartoum, Sudan.
Digital Image processing and GIS applications have been successfully utilized as major tools in mapping and prospecting for gold mineralization in the arid area of Wadi Umm Beckol-Wadi Akasha, northern Sudan. Geological traverses and way points for geological observations and sampling were plotted in the digitally enhanced Landsat TM+ imagery pre-field and a preliminary geological map was prepared. Ground checks helped in the preparation of the final regional geological map at the scale of 1:50000. The main elements of geology were found to include high-grade gneisses; low-grade green schist island-arc assemblage of metasediments, metavolcanics and ophiolitic tectonic mélanges. The layered sequences-mentioned above- are intruded by syn-orogenic, I-type and post-orogenic, A-type granites; and are separated by structural contacts. In this study, at least two styles of gold mineralization were identified. One style is the auriferous (gold-bearing) talcose schist within an ophiolitic tectonic mélange in the extreme south of the study area. These rocks appear pale pink-brown and light green in the 7, 4, 2 and 7, 5, 4 colour composite images; respectively. Two similar linear talcose schists were easily identified in the processed images and were confirmed by ground checks. Also, highly silicified carbonate graphitic schists occur within the metasediments, which were suspected to be highly altered serpentinites. Samples analyzed by fire assay were found to be auriferous. Similar two additional bands were easily distinguished and mapped making use of their characteristic light greenish blue colour in the 7, 4, 2; and dark – light blue colour in the 7, 5 ,4 colour composites. Furthermore, auriferous, sheared and silicified metavolcanics were easily identified as they appear reddish brown in the 7, 4, 2; and pale green in the 7, 5, 4 colour composites. So, geological mapping and prospecting for certain styles of gold mineralization can be successfully achieved through remotely-sensed criteria in arid zones such as the study area, where there is no vegetational cover to interfere with the signals. Indeed, interpretations must be supported by field check and laboratory studies.
Geological Mapping, Gold Mineralization, Landsat 7 ETM+, Image Processing, GIS, Arid Region
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