Geological evolution of the Mungari area of the Kundana gold camp

Evaluating the structural and geological architecture of the Mungari area, which hosts the Frog’s Leg and White Foil gold mines


The Kundana gold camp hosts deposits spatially associated with the K2 “shear zone”, part of a 250 km long, NNW-striking structural corridor that separates the Ora Banda and Coolgardie Domains.

In the Mungari area, the K2 structure is spatially associated with the Frog’s Leg gold deposit and is located at the stratigraphic contact between the Victorious basalts to the west, and the Black Flag Beds volcaniclastic rocks to the east. Gold mineralization at Frog’s Leg is hosted in sub-parallel quartz veins / breccia lodes. At the White Foil deposit 3 km to the west, gold occurs in quartz veins / stockworks hosted by a gabbroic sill of the Powder Sill intrusive complex.

The objective of the project is to assess the controls over the gold system that produced the Mungari deposits and broader Kundana camp. This knowledge will aid with mine development and near-mine exploration in addition to regional targeting and delineation of further resources. A final 4D reconstruction of the gold deposits will be done by integrating the structural and alteration histories of the Mungari gold camp with any related magmatism.

As part of this project the successful PhD applicant will:

  • Determine the structural and mineral paragenesis associated with mineralisation of the Mungari deposits
  • Undertake camp scale lithostratigraphic compilation focusing on lithofacies analysis and variations highlighting fundamental architecture
  • Conduct geochronology on selected lithostratigraphic horizons and intrusions
  • Interpretation of geophysical responses, forward modelling and delineation of the fundamental architecture through integration of geology and geophysics
  • Synthesis of deposit- to camp-scale mineralization and tectono-stratigraphic evolution of the Mungari gold camp

Research team leader: Professor Stephen Rowins

My research is focused on understanding the fundamental factors that control the development of precious and base-metal mineral systems, and developing exploration tools for their discovery. Although I have studied and explored for most major types of mineral deposits, I have special expertise in magmatic-hydrothermal systems and combining field geology, structure, lithogeochemistry, mineral chemistry, with geochronology and stable isotope geochemistry.

The project will be co-supervised by an inter-disciplinary team of experienced researchers in field and structural geology, geochemistry, mineralogy and geochronology.

Collaborations and funding

Current funding:

  • This project is supported by the $2.3M, 3 year Yilgarn2020 initiative, which seeks to meet the mineral exploration industry’s needs to improve predictive mineral exploration in the Yilgarn Craton.

External collaborators:

  • Yilgarn2020 is a collaboration between the Centre for Exploration Targeting in the School of Earth Sciences at UWA, the State Government (MRIWA and GSWA) and industry sponsors
  • New industry sponsors can contact either the project leader Nicolas Thebaud or deputy leader Stephen Rowins for information on the potential to join Yilgarn 2020


How to apply

Interested in becoming part of this project? Complete the following steps to submit your expression of interest:

Step 1 - Check criteria

General UWA PhD entrance requirements can be found on the Future Students website.

Requirements specific to this project:

  • You must have a strong background in geology with some exposure to the fundamental methods of the other disicplines
  • You will be willing to conduct field work in close collaboration with the mining industry

Step 2 - Submit enquiry to research team leader

Step 3 - Lodge application

After you have discussed your project with the research team leader, you should be in a position to proceed to the next step of the UWA application process: Lodge an application. Different application procedures apply to domestic and international students.


Domestic students

All domestic students may apply for Research Training Program and University Postgraduate Awards (UPA) scholarships.

The Australian Government's Endeavour Awards and Scholarships are available to Australian applicants for study in participating countries and regions.

International students

A range of scholarships are available from international organisations and governments. The full list, organised by country, is available on the Future Students website.

In addition, all international students may apply for International Research Training Program scholarships.

The Australian Government's Endeavour Awards and Scholarships are available to international applicants from participating countries and regions.

Indigenous students
Indigenous students are encouraged to apply for Indigenous Postgraduate Research Supplementary Scholarships.
Forrest Foundation scholarships
All international and Australian students who wish to study towards the degree of Doctor of Philosophy (PhD) at The University of Western Australia may apply for Forrest Scholarships.

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