The grant will contribute to funding a team of researchers from the Centre for Exploration Targeting at the University of WA, Applied Geology at Curtin University and the Discovery team of CSIRO.
“Greenfields exploration in WA is directly hampered by the weathered cover that blankets this ancient continent and that can hide the underlying geology and, therefore, mineral resources,” WA Mines Minister Bill Marmion said.
“In simplest terms, this research should result in new detection technologies to help plan exploration campaigns and uncover new mineral riches.”
MRIWA began operation last month as the successor to the long-established Minerals Energy Research Institute of WA (MERIWA).
The abolition of MERIWA and its replacement by MRIWA was considered necessary to consolidate and strengthen the state’s capacity to foster research projects to deliver on the identified knowledge and technology needs of the mineral industry.
The state government has since provided an additional $7.5 million in funding to support the new group’s work.
“The government needs to facilitate investment in minerals research to ensure the state’s mining operations are competitive with operations in lower-cost jurisdictions,” Marmion said.
“WA was recently ranked number one in the world for investment attractiveness by the Fraser Institute, but we must continue to work on ensuring we remain number one.
“Research such as this plays an important role in achieving this goal.”