- Postdoctoral Researcher
Aileen Doran is a PhD researcher in the iCRAG raw materials spoke. Aileen graduated from University College Cork with a BSc in Geology in 2015. She then continued on to work at the Geological Survey of Ireland as part of the TELLUS Survey team for a year. She joined iCRAG in September 2016 under the supervision of Dr. Julian Menuge.
Aileen’s research will involve investigating hydrothermal fluid flow in Irish Zn-Pb deposits through clumped C-O isotope analysis of carbonates and Zn-Cu-S isotope analysis of sphalerite. Part of this research will involve determining how these techniques may be used in geochemical exploration to vector towards orebodies.
General research interests include petrology, economic geology and geochemistry. Particular interest in stable isotope geochemistry of Irish Zn-Pb deposits.
Zinc and lead have proved important in everyday life through their use in vehicles, certain batteries and even as an anticorrosive agent. These metals are found in Ireland in the form of ores or metal-bearing rocks, known as Irish Zn-Pb deposits. Since the 1960s, five Zn-Pb deposits have been mined and over twenty sub-economic prospects uncovered.
Many of the processes responsible for the formation of these economically important deposits are poorly understood. This research will help enhance understanding of deposit formation, through the use of isotopic analysis. This research will further help mineral exploration for zinc and lead in Ireland.
Project title: Hydrothermal fluid flow in Irish Zn-Pb deposits: a Zn-Cu-S isotope and clumped isotope approach
Irish Zn-Pb deposits are a series of stratabound orebodies, which are carbonate-hosted and structurally controlled. Irish Zn-Pb mineralization formed from carbonate replacement of Lower Carboniferous limestone, when metal-bearing, hydrothermal fluids (up to 200ºC) ascended on normal faults to mix with sinking, cooler (<50?C) hypersaline brines carrying bacteriogenically reduced dissolved sulphide (Wilkinson et al. 2005).
Due to their complexity, it has proved difficult to model in detail the fluid flow within and around Irish-type deposits. Some progress has been made using metal ratios and stable isotope compositions, e.g. Blakeman et al. (2002). For this project, Zn-Cu-S isotope and clumped O-C isotope analysis are being used to aid in fluid flow modelling. The initial focus will be on the recently closed Lisheen deposit (Co. Tipperary) and the Stonepark prospects (Co. Limerick). Other deposits may be incorporated into the study where suitable material and deposit understanding is available.
This project is primarily concerned with modelling the fluid flow and metal deposition through space and time associated with Irish-type Zn-Pb deposits, and to determine how these techniques could be deployed in geochemical exploration to vector towards Irish-type orebodies.
- Postdoctoral Researcher
- Earth Resources
- Mineral Exploration