Regolith Exploration Geochemistry in Tropical and Subtropical Terrains - 1st Edition - ISBN: 9780444890955, 9781483291222

Regolith Exploration Geochemistry in Tropical and Subtropical Terrains, Volume 4

1st Edition

Editors: C.R.M. Butt H. Zeegers
eBook ISBN: 9781483291222
Imprint: Elsevier Science
Published Date: 8th July 1992
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Table of Contents

Preface. List of Contributors. Introduction. I: Characteristics of Tropically Weathered Terrains. Climate, Geomorphological Environment and Geochemical Dispersion Models (C.R.M. Butt and H. Zeegers). Chemical Weathering (J.-J. Trescases). The Ferruginous Laterites (D. Nahon and Y. Tardy). Soil Formation in Tropicallly Weathered Terrains (Y. Lucas and M. Chauvel). The Chemical Mobility and Transport of Elements in the Weathering Environment (M.R. Thornber). Physical Weathering and Dispersion (C.R.M. Butt). II: Gossan Formation and Gossan Surveys. The Mechanisms of Sulphide Oxidation and Gossan Formation (M.R. Thornber and G.F. Taylor). Gossan and Ironstone Surveys (G.F. Taylor and M.R. Thornber). III: Exploration in Areas of Low to Moderate Relief. Seasonally Humid Tropical Terrains (Savannas) (H. Zeegers and P. Lecomte). Humid Tropical Terrains (Rainforests) (P. Lecomte and H. Zeegers). Semi-Arid and Arid Terrains (C.R.M. Butt). IV: Exploration in Areas of Moderate to High Relief. Dissected Terrains and Tropical Mountains (C.R.M. Butt and H. Zeegers). V: Specific Commodities and Techniques. Diamond Exploration in Tropical Terrains (G.P. Gregory and A.J.A. Janse). Uranium Exploration in Tropical Terrains (F. Bianconi and K. Kogler). The Geochemistry of Gold in Lateritic Terrains (D.J. Gray, C.R.M. Butt and L.M. Lawrance). Heavy Mineral Surveys in Exploration of Lateritic Terrain (G. Friedrich, A. Marker and M. Kanig). VI: Synthesis and Conclusions. Summary and Procedural Recommendations. (H. Zeegers and C.R.M. Butt). Appendix 1: Sample Media used in Geochemical Exploration in Tropically Weathered Environments: Definitions and Use. Appendix 2: Sample Preparation and Analysis. Appendix 3: Profile Nomenclature and Glossary. Author Index. Place Index. Subject Index.


The use of exploration geochemistry has increased enormously in the last decade. The present volume specifically addresses those geochemical exploration practices appropriate for tropical, sub-tropical and adjacent areas – in environments ranging from rainforest to desert. Practical recommendations are made for the optimization of sampling, and analytical and interpretational procedures for exploration according to the particular nature of tropically weathered terrains. The underlying theme is the recognition that regions between 35°N and 35°S in particular have a common history of deep chemical weathering and lateritization during the late Mesozoic and early Tertiary. This has had a profound and lasting effect, so that the surface geochemical expressions of mineralization throughout these regions have many similar features, with local modification due to more recent weathering under changed climates.

The volume discusses the data derived from numerous research and case studies in terms of exploration and dispersion models based on the weathering and geomorphological history. The models permit valid comparisons between equivalent terrains that may be geographically widely separated and situated in quite different climatic environments. The basis of the volume is to view geochemical dispersion within the context of a genetic understanding of the evolution of landforms and the regolith (i.e. landscape geochemistry) and to develop exploration procedures based on this understanding.

This book should be of interest to exploration geochemists, economic geologists, soil scientists, geomorphologists and environmental geochemists.


© Elsevier Science 1992
Elsevier Science
eBook ISBN:


@qu:The volume is much more than the guide to geochemical exploration techiques which is perhaps suggested by the title. Part I comprises a detailed discussion of the chemical and physical processes involved in soil formation in tropical areas; in addition to its relevance to geochemical exploration, this section is of considerable fundamental scientific interest and should become a standard source of information on this topic... Overall, this volume maintains the high standards set by the three previous volumes in this series. It is an attractively produced book containing many pertinent maps, diagrams and tables which are invariably lucid and uncluttered. Like the previous volumes, this one combines in-depth discussion and description of the fundamental processes controlling geochemical dispersion, as well as discussion of field methods and case histories. @source:SEG Newsletter @qu:Overall, this volume extends the outstanding tradition of the Handbook of Geochemical Exploration into the difficult arena of tropical environments. It will be an essential reference for explorationists in the tropics, but should also be valuable for others dealing with soils and weathering in tropical regions, because of its geologic-geomorphic view and extensive bibliography. @source:Journal of Geochemical Exploration @qu:The book should be an essential purchase for all exploration companies and individual exploration geochemists working in tropical to subtropical terrains, and should be on the shelf of every university library where geology or soil science is taught. @source:Ore Geology Reviews @qu:This will be auseful reference work for many years as it fills a large gap in the literature. It will not only be of use to geologists, but also to soil scientists, geomorphologists and environmental geochemists. @source:Mineralogical Magazine @qu:...this volume extends the outstanding

Ratings and Reviews

About the Editors

C.R.M. Butt Editor

Affiliations and Expertise

Division of Exploration Geoscience, CSIRO, Wembley, WA, Australia

H. Zeegers Editor

Affiliations and Expertise

Département Exploration, BRGM, Orléans, France