Author ORCID Identifier

https://orcid.org/0000-0002-8314-7029

Year of Publication

2019

Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy (PhD)

Document Type

Doctoral Dissertation

College

Arts and Sciences

Department

Earth and Environmental Sciences (Geology)

First Advisor

Dr. Dhananjay Ravat

Abstract

South Sudan, a new country formed in 2011, has been planning to develop its mineral sector by allocating exploration licenses to investors. This decision requires preliminary knowledge of geology and mineral occurrences, both of which are unavailable because the country has been engaged in a civil war for more than 50 years. Exploration of mineral resources in South Sudan has lagged behind its petroleum industry, except for artisanal gold mining, which is practiced intermittently by local communities. Freely available satellite gravity and remote-sensing data were used to map the basement architecture as well as zones of hydrothermal alteration in the Didinga Hills; both basement architecture and hydrothermal alteration are of prime importance in exploration and development of mineral resources in the study area. Qualitative interpretation of gravity data is consistent with the known geology of petroleum fields and the Precambrian basement complex. Remote-sensing data and techniques—optimal band combination, band ratioing, and principal component analysis—have been effective in extracting information related to lithology, hydrothermal alteration, and geologic structures. The resulting basic information and methods have identified additional prospective exploration areas where more detailed gravity, magnetic, electromagnetic, and seismic surveys should be carried out; this will assist decision makers in matters related to land use, mineral titles, and exploration of natural resources, and lead to prosperity for the new nation of South Sudan.

Digital Object Identifier (DOI)

https://doi.org/10.13023/etd.2019.061

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