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Statistical guides to estimating the number of undiscovered mineral deposits: an example with porphyry copper deposits

By:  and 
Edited by: Qiuming Cheng and G. F. Bonham-Carter

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Abstract

Estimating numbers of undiscovered mineral deposits is a fundamental part of assessing mineral resources. Some statistical tools can act as guides to low variance, unbiased estimates of the number of deposits. The primary guide is that the estimates must be consistent with the grade and tonnage models. Another statistical guide is the deposit density (i.e., the number of deposits per unit area of permissive rock in well-explored control areas). Preliminary estimates and confidence limits of the number of undiscovered deposits in a tract of given area may be calculated using linear regression and refined using frequency distributions with appropriate parameters. A Poisson distribution leads to estimates having lower relative variances than the regression estimates and implies a random distribution of deposits. Coefficients of variation are used to compare uncertainties of negative binomial, Poisson, or MARK3 empirical distributions that have the same expected number of deposits as the deposit density. Statistical guides presented here allow simple yet robust estimation of the number of undiscovered deposits in permissive terranes. 

Additional publication details

Publication type Conference Paper
Publication Subtype Conference Paper
Title Statistical guides to estimating the number of undiscovered mineral deposits: an example with porphyry copper deposits
Year Published 2005
Language English
Publisher Geomatics Research Laboratory, York University
Contributing office(s) Geology, Minerals, Energy, and Geophysics Science Center
Description 6 p.
Larger Work Type Book
Larger Work Subtype Conference publication
Larger Work Title Proceedings of IAMG—The annual conference of the International Assoc. for Mathematical Geology
First page 1028
Last page 1033