Exploring Risk and Uncertainty using Indicator Interpolation

CIM Vancouver 2016
Mr Michael O'Brien (Senior Principal Consultant - QG Consulting)
The development of ‘implicit’ modelling techniques, employing radial basis functions has significantly reduced the time and effort needed to build geological model meshes. Implicit meshes constructed with appropriate parameters are increasingly accepted as suitable domains for resource modelling.

Historically, simulation techniques and indicator estimation have been used as tools to define regions of high grade or high confidence in mineral deposits. Translation of numerical data (such as metal grade) and categorical data (such as lithologies) to indicators has enabled the volumetric uncertainty of grade and interpreted lithologies to be assessed using indicator kriging and simulation.

Radial basis functions are an alternative process that can be applied to the indicators to rapidly explore volumetric uncertainties. A comparison of uncertainty estimates using radial basis functions, simulations and indicator kriging validates the former methodology. This work points the way forward to more routine provision of volumetric uncertainty information to guide exploration and mine planning.
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