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Sam (Rhys) Davies

PhD student
School of Earth Sciences - Centre for Exploration Targeting

Contact details

Centre for Exploration Targeting (CET)
School of Earth Sciences
The University of Western Australia (M006)
35 Stirling Highway

As a graduate of the Royal School of Mines, Imperial College London, Sam has worked for several minerals industry consultancies and junior exploration companies in Western Australia. Greenfields Research provided the opportunity to co-author a series of mineral economics industry reports and research papers. During employment with Maxwell GeoServices, Sam managed two major geology data acquisition and management, industry projects. Sam’s mineral exploration experience includes office, fieldwork and client site visits across Australia - including structural and lithological mapping, early stage exploration and drilling projects, as well as developing and maintaining a successful working relationship with internal staff and corporate collaborators.

Under the supervision of Emeritus Professor David Groves, and Professors Allan Trench, Michael Dentith and Pietro Guj, Sam’s PhD research aims to effectively translate the Mineral Systems Concept into a robust exploration targeting model. The intention of the project, defined as a significant research challenge by several authors, is to formulate an integrated mineral-systems exploration targeting model through the following steps: 

  • assessment of the critical elements within West Australian Archaean orogenic gold-mineralising systems;
  • application of existing exploration tools, including mineral endowment assessments and mineral prospectivity analyses, to define exploration maturity and map mineral distribution;
  • and a review of exploration, decision-making, and corporate strategies employed by companies operating in Western Australia.

    A whole-system model, linking mineral prospectivity to metal endowment, can provide key information to guide exploration decision-making by attributing a risk-adjusted dollar value to each target, allowing a clear business case to be built for an exploration project.