It’s All about Carbonates

A Propensity to Talk Density tapped three “rock stars” in the geophysical and geology space to discuss the importance of carbonates. Lending their thoughts and expertise were Colm Murphy, Chief Geoscientist at Bell Geospace, Graham Banks, Founder of Route to Reserves, and Jean Hsieh, Geoscientist for Sedimentary Geologist Consultants.

“Modelling carbonate rocks, or ‘reservoirs’ of metals and fluids, requires integration of the right expertise and the right data types to decipher their parameters. It’s worth it: the potential mineral deposits we could find may be very valuable.”

Carbonate rocks are porous. These holes can contain metals, petroleum and other resources, which makes them very economically important.

“The human population is predicted to increase by three and a half billion people this century,” Banks said. “And two-thirds of those people are going to be living in cities. So, we have to try and imagine the volume of new night lighting and electronic hardware, wire, galvanized steel and fuel to power those machines. And what rocks are we going to find all of those raw materials in? Looking into the future, carbonate rocks should be at the forefront of our minds.”

Historically through to present day, carbonates have played an important role in finding petroleum as well as providing materials for building and progress such as cement and concrete. As we move into the future, carbonate rocks can host the rare earth elements needed for meeting increasing global demands on everything from LCD screens to mobile phones, permanent magnets in wind turbines, electric cars, and hospital equipment. So, the drive for the exploration, understanding and mapping of Earth’s carbonates is on.

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