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Lyceum 2021 | Together Towards Tomorrow

This panel brings together industry experts to discuss using geology to better refine geophysical models (and vice versa) to build more informed subsurface interpretations.

We will discuss the challenges of communicating with distributed teams, contractors and consultants and share thoughts on future industry workflows, bridging divides in technology, and what this might look like for tomorrow’s geoscientists.

Overview

Speakers

Katherine McKenna
Principal Geophysicist, Mineral Exploration Australasia, BHP

Barry Bourne
Principal Consultant, Terra Resources

Steve Kuhn
Senior Geophysicist, Fortescue Metals Group

Teagan Blaikie
Research Scientist, CSIRO

Mark Lowe
Senior Geophysicist, Seequent

Duration

46 min

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Video transcript

[00:00:01.004]
(techno music)

[00:00:10.419]
<v ->All right, welcome everybody.</v>

[00:00:11.970]
Today we’re going to be having a panel discussion

[00:00:14.500]
on how exploration geoscientists

[00:00:16.830]
are informing geological models

[00:00:19.780]
with iterative geophysical modeling.

[00:00:22.740]
Today’s speakers are going to be Katherine McKenna

[00:00:25.210]
who is a principle geophysicist

[00:00:27.220]
with Minerals Exploration Australasia at BHP.

[00:00:30.930]
Katherine is a principle geophysicist

[00:00:32.870]
at BHP in Perth where she is responsible

[00:00:35.230]
for the use of geophysics for the mineral exploration

[00:00:37.870]
and generative groups for Australasia.

[00:00:40.420]
With over 30 years experience in mineral exploration,

[00:00:43.430]
oil and gas exploration, and applied geophysics,

[00:00:46.200]
airborne and ground geophysical acquisition

[00:00:48.150]
and processing and interpretation.

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She has worked throughout Asia, Africa,

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Europe, and the Middle East

[00:00:53.840]
and holds an MBA from Curtin University,

[00:00:56.430]
a Bachelor of Science in geology and geophysics

[00:00:58.500]
from Macquarie University, and a BA in classical languages,

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Latin and ancient Greek, and ancient history

[00:01:04.240]
from University of New England.

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Welcome Katherine.

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Also we have Dr. Teagan Blaikie

[00:01:10.297]
who is a research scientist at CSIRO.

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Teagan Blaikie is a research scientist

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in geology and geophysics at CSIRO.

[00:01:18.100]
Her research focuses on qualitative interpretation

[00:01:21.070]
of geophysical data to generate structural

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and geological maps of covered terrains.

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And applying geologically constrained forward

[00:01:27.990]
and inverse modeling of potential field data

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to model crustal architecture.

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Her recent work has focused extensively

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on Proterozoic basin systems in Northern Australia,

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where she has worked on a range

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of regional scale interpretation

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and modeling projects in collaboration

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with the State geological surveys.

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Welcome Dr. Teagan.

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We also have Dr. Steve Kuhn,

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a senior geophysicist at Fortescue Metals Group.

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Steve Kuhn is a senior geophysicist

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at Fortescue Metals Group where he is responsible

[00:01:58.120]
for gold and copper exploration

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in Western Australia and New South Wales.

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He has worked in geophysics and geology for 15 years

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throughout Australia, Central and Southeast Asia,

[00:02:07.860]
and North and South America.

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Steve holds a PhD, Grad Cert and Bachelor of Science Honors

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from CODES or UTAS with a focus

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on potential field acquisition and modeling,

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machine assisted lithological mapping

[00:02:19.080]
and mineral exploration,

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and quantifying and communicating the error

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and uncertainty associated with

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geological modeling and prediction.

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Welcome Steve.

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And also we have Barry Bourne,

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the principal consultant at Terra Resources.

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Barry is a principal and founder

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of Terra Resources and Terra Petrophysics.

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Up until 2013, he was chief geophysicist

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for Barrick Gold and is now a mineral exploration consultant

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to private and public international exploration groups.

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Barry graduated in geology and geophysics

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from the University of Western Australia.

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He currently sits on the technical advisory committee

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for UWA Center for Exploration Targeting.

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He was shortlisted for the Australia Innovation Awards

[00:03:01.360]
in 2012 and with Advanced Global Australian

[00:03:04.070]
of the Year, Mining and Resources in 2013.

[00:03:07.240]
Welcome Barry.

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Welcome to all of our panelists today.

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I’m sure it’s going to be a great discussion

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and I’m really looking forward

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to hearing about those insights

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into how we can inform our geological models

[00:03:22.770]
more effectively, using geo-physical modeling.

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So firstly today, I’m going to pose

[00:03:30.680]
a question to Katherine McKenna.

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So Katherine, would you like to answer this question?

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And it’s a question around how

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would geoscience modeling teams

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connecting within organizations

[00:03:42.270]
and sharing valuable insights to govern development

[00:03:45.200]
of more robust geological models?

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<v ->Thanks Mark.</v>

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We’re a relatively small team.

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We’re made up of a generative geologist, geochemist,

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structural geologist, geophysicist,

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and exploration geologist.

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And we have,

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kind of like

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a range of exploration sites

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from early genitive stage to a quite detailed discovery,

[00:04:16.420]
like discovery type

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point of view.

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And so with this, we actually use our modeling

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in all different ways and if we take it from

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the beginning of the genitive stage

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or very early stage, a lot of our work is undercover.

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So the use of geophysics is quite important

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and we’re using it

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to give indications to the geologist of what is possible.

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What is possible based on their ideas,

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their geological ideas, and we’re going back and forth

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between what their models are

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and what the geophysics is showing.

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One of the vital aspects that’s become apparent

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to the geologists now, is the importance

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of the petrophysics that we’re using

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to enhance these models but also

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to understand the geology better.

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And then we go to extremes of where,

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you know we’ve done a lot of drilling

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and we’ve done a lot of work on it

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and understanding of the geology.

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And we’re back modeling again

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and giving more confidence to the geologists

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as to their geological models and vice versa

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from our geophysical models into a geological.

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So it’s really bringing that conversation together

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and the petrophysics is really like,

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the binding force associated with it.

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It’s giving a better understanding

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of the geology that we’re dealing with

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and a better understanding and confidence in de-risking,

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say in the earlier stages of how we put these drills,

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be it stratigraphic drilling or be it target drilling.

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That there’s a better confidence associated

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with it because that conversation

[00:05:56.640]
between the geologist and the geophysicist

[00:06:02.190]
is around the models is a unified conversation.

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<v ->All right, thank you Katherine.</v>

[00:06:12.640]
Follow up question I’m going to ask Steve,

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is something that Katherine raised which was around

[00:06:19.370]
that communication within those groups and

[00:06:23.040]
obviously talking about early exploration.

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How has that communication in early exploration

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at and with your team, Steve?

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<v ->Yeah, quite similar to what Katherine said</v>

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but in the sense that we do obviously model

[00:06:41.270]
like everyone else on the panel at various scales

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and various amounts of detail will go into those models

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as necessitated by the problem we’re trying to solve.

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We are more and more so,

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moving a lot of the work that we produce

[00:06:55.590]
towards the front end of modeling.

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So, because it’s become quite easy

[00:06:58.790]
to make simple potential field models

[00:07:01.030]
or things of that nature and get them looking quite slick

[00:07:05.060]
in software, like for quite quickly.

[00:07:06.720]
We are actually doing that at the front end

[00:07:08.220]
and using things like Central

[00:07:10.669]
or just more conventional means

[00:07:12.588]
to push those models around.

[00:07:14.890]
But even in the fairly early stages of exploration,

[00:07:18.360]
we can build some good looking things

[00:07:20.957]
and communicate those to the team

[00:07:22.960]
and we just have to again,

[00:07:25.040]
make sure that those error bars

[00:07:27.080]
that come with those early stage models

[00:07:29.330]
moves in lockstep with how slick and easy it is

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to make some pretty early preliminary models.

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<v ->Yeah and it’s great to hear about you know,</v>

[00:07:42.820]
that communication and the information around that

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is so important to retain as it goes

[00:07:49.620]
from those early exploration stages

[00:07:51.660]
to those later stages of the exploration workflow.

[00:07:56.720]
I think something that you mentioned Steve as well,

[00:08:00.450]
is around those errors that could potentially come in

[00:08:03.260]
and that, that information could potentially be lost.

[00:08:05.940]
And that there is some tools and technology around those?

[00:08:09.440]
And we’ll get to that question in just a moment.

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I think another question I’d like to just maybe place

[00:08:15.150]
with Barry is, what do you see as

[00:08:20.580]
key challenges that could come if that information

[00:08:23.380]
potentially wasn’t kept through

[00:08:29.150]
that workflow?

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<v ->Yeah so that’s one of the biggest challenges that we face.</v>

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Is to,

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you know, relay the integrity of those models,

[00:08:43.030]
both geological and geophysical model

[00:08:47.440]
to the end user.

[00:08:48.540]
And when making the exploration decisions on where to drill

[00:08:52.547]
and how to interpret that information

[00:08:54.720]
and knowing the limitations of that.

[00:08:57.780]
I think, there’s a lot of effort that needs to go

[00:09:01.520]
to communicate in that and and also documenting that

[00:09:05.590]
in a way which is easily understood,

[00:09:07.740]
be it graphically and or in simple terms

[00:09:11.930]
given that

[00:09:14.990]
the end-users are often in different geographical locations.

[00:09:20.430]
<v ->Excellent, so Katherine I might pose</v>

[00:09:22.210]
this question back to you.

[00:09:23.770]
Is there something that you have to do

[00:09:25.470]
in your workflow maybe before you finish a project,

[00:09:28.580]
before you hand that over to the exploration manager?

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What do you do to make sure that information isn’t lost?

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<v ->It’s really around</v>

[00:09:36.195]
the documentation at the end of it and it’s probably

[00:09:39.320]
one of the most vital aspects

[00:09:42.112]
of the work process or the workflow,

[00:09:45.860]
is that documentation of your learning experiences.

[00:09:50.370]
Sorry, your results obviously

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but also your learning experiences,

[00:09:56.100]
positive and negative from it.

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And then you know, you documented it so that it’s accessible

[00:10:03.520]
to other groups within the company

[00:10:05.470]
but also communicating that.

[00:10:07.950]
You know, having a regular face-to-face as best we can,

[00:10:10.840]
in the situation we’re in, to describe it.

[00:10:14.030]
So there’s questions around the results you’ve got

[00:10:16.710]
or questions around the technique you used

[00:10:20.906]
or how it’s come through, is communicated

[00:10:23.430]
through the group as well.

[00:10:29.430]
<v ->Excellent and obviously those teams sizes change</v>

[00:10:33.230]
and those people that are in charge of those projects change

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and as it’s already been mentioned

[00:10:38.640]
by a few there on that question

[00:10:42.053]
It’s so important to retain that information

[00:10:43.920]
as it passes through between those different groups.

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At the start, I’m sure it’s quite a lot easier

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as those groups are smaller and then as those projects

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go through to those later stages,

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those projects get larger as well.

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So.

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Thanks for that answer, Katherine.

[00:11:03.160]
Steve, I’m going to pose a question on to you now

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and it’s around, with diverse teams spread around the world

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at Fortescue Metals Group in particular.

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What new technologies are bringing professionals

[00:11:14.370]
closer together to inform exploration projects

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more effectively and how has this changed over time?

[00:11:27.247]
<v ->Yeah, thanks Mark.</v>

[00:11:28.743]
I guess, it dovetails on very well from the last question

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and I think that in terms of genuinely

[00:11:34.670]
new cutting edge technologies.

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It’s probably less of the focus as technologies

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that have just been creeping in

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and improving over the last three to five years, even.

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And that is things like Teams,

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it’s things like cloud-based resources,

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be it for actual compute power or for communicating results

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and I think that’s been the big step forward there.

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So where certainly in a previous life

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and even to some extent at Fortescue,

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we’ve moved from physically having to send things

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around the place to transferring via

[00:12:06.480]
certain web-based services or FTP servers

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to legitimate real-time cloud-computing

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where the only bottleneck is your upload/download speed.

[00:12:14.460]
Well, that’s made things very easy

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to share resources and models with teams

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and groups sort of scattered all over the world

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and Fortescue is quite large company

[00:12:26.111]
to say the least.

[00:12:28.710]
But as an international explorer

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we’re growing into that footprint as well

[00:12:33.082]
and being able to share in real-time information,

[00:12:35.410]
data models and whatnot with our colleagues

[00:12:37.310]
is a huge step forward, I think.

[00:12:39.030]
Platforms like Central are obviously going to be part of that,

[00:12:42.580]
but also just general cloud services,

[00:12:44.910]
whether it’s Azure or Amazon or some other group.

[00:12:49.630]
Now, I think I’m coming back to the point

[00:12:52.440]
we made in the last question.

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The big challenge that I see in this whole world is

[00:12:58.490]
of data-sharing is now that we can make

[00:13:01.590]
really good looking models very easily and very rapidly.

[00:13:04.310]
And now that we can get those things

[00:13:06.460]
shared around the group very, very rapidly.

[00:13:09.980]
The challenge for us as scientists whether

[00:13:11.720]
it’s just our own communication skills

[00:13:13.580]
or whether it’s the software or things

[00:13:15.500]
coming with us on the journey,

[00:13:17.160]
is to make sure that our ability

[00:13:18.580]
to communicate the strengths and weaknesses,

[00:13:21.290]
errors and uncertainty around those models.

[00:13:25.425]
That, that can still keep up with our ability

[00:13:27.820]
to just fling, you know, really good looking 3D models

[00:13:31.030]
and whatnot around the place

[00:13:32.310]
and that’s where I see the big challenge there.

[00:13:39.960]
<v ->Great, thanks Steve.</v>

[00:13:41.990]
And as you mentioned there, we’re talking

[00:13:44.270]
or you’re talking around these cloud-based technologies

[00:13:47.500]
that have obviously come around in over time,

[00:13:51.200]
over the last 10 or so years.

[00:13:54.290]
For example, like Seequent Central.

[00:13:56.790]
There has been obviously a move in the industry

[00:13:59.810]
to take those cloud-based technologies and,

[00:14:02.590]
the data size and the data security aspects

[00:14:06.710]
have definitely accelerated really quickly.

[00:14:11.690]
Something which you brought up was

[00:14:13.140]
that the information side there may still be room

[00:14:16.550]
to improve how that information is shared as well

[00:14:19.810]
and there’s a challenge there as well.

[00:14:22.150]
Dr. Teagen Blaikie, I’d like to get your insights

[00:14:25.220]
from a research side, around what would be the value

[00:14:29.680]
of sharing these data and making it more accessible

[00:14:34.060]
and also sharing the scientific insights?

[00:14:41.430]
<v ->I find this data incredibly valuable, so.</v>

[00:14:45.550]
Anything that’s acquired by industry on top of,

[00:14:49.990]
you know some of the already regional scale datasets

[00:14:52.390]
that we have acquired by government

[00:14:56.637]
when we’re working on research problems

[00:14:58.290]
these high resolution datasets just provide

[00:15:03.225]
a huge amount of added information

[00:15:06.760]
to our research problems.

[00:15:08.800]
So being able to access this data

[00:15:11.300]
more readily is incredibly valuable

[00:15:14.540]
and I think what we’re seeing in the last several years is

[00:15:20.580]
a huge improvement to various data portals where you

[00:15:23.880]
can actually access this information.

[00:15:26.940]
So you’re able to get it a lot more easily and rapidly.

[00:15:29.520]
You can have it within a few minutes

[00:15:30.760]
of typically requesting it rather than waiting days

[00:15:33.900]
or weeks for hard-drives to arrive in the post.

[00:15:41.440]
<v ->Great, thanks Teagan.</v>

[00:15:43.240]
Barry, would you like to provide any input?

[00:15:45.460]
Is there any potential disadvantages from having all

[00:15:49.820]
of this data accessible, or is there any challenges

[00:15:55.715]
that you see in that data access as well?

[00:16:03.700]
<v ->The way things have changed from you know,</v>

[00:16:05.820]
how we distribute data has been from

[00:16:08.840]
some sort of processed form into

[00:16:12.330]
platforms now where we can distribute the actual data.

[00:16:16.550]
So the actual information that’s required

[00:16:19.470]
to do the processing is out there live

[00:16:21.960]
to all the different exploration groups.

[00:16:25.400]
It’s a positive for the technical experts

[00:16:27.950]
that can integrate that data correctly

[00:16:30.590]
but it also poses a problem that we need to have training

[00:16:36.150]
and more

[00:16:40.212]
educated understanding of those data

[00:16:42.970]
and how we might process those data

[00:16:45.487]
and integrate them with other geological datasets.

[00:16:53.300]
<v ->Excellent, so thanks for that, Barry.</v>

[00:16:56.740]
Katherine,

[00:16:58.370]
do you see that these data sets

[00:17:01.170]
that possibly research and government groups are sharing

[00:17:05.170]
and making accessible through cloud-based technology,

[00:17:09.390]
is that valuable for you and your teams?

[00:17:15.760]
<v ->Absolutely, I mean.</v>

[00:17:18.290]
And in all stages too,

[00:17:20.160]
not just the early stage of genitive side

[00:17:22.680]
right through the exploration workflow.

[00:17:29.410]
Anything that the governments and the research groups

[00:17:32.270]
are putting together, we absorb into

[00:17:35.450]
what we’re dealing with.

[00:17:39.540]
I can’t sort of describe the degree

[00:17:43.912]
of value that these data sets have

[00:17:46.600]
because I mean, some of these areas we’re going into

[00:17:48.960]
that have had very little exploration

[00:17:51.240]
and these data sets are adding such,

[00:17:54.760]
giving us a headstart as to what we can expect

[00:17:58.190]
or giving something to start our process

[00:18:01.340]
of determining what we’re going to use

[00:18:03.990]
and how we’re going to use it.

[00:18:05.760]
And from the research side that, you know,

[00:18:08.270]
the work that they do in the interpretation side

[00:18:10.980]
pulls in, just gives us just another view

[00:18:13.750]
of what’s going on as well,

[00:18:15.340]
or ideas of how to do things better as well.

[00:18:19.010]
<v ->Barry, do you see how</v>

[00:18:21.810]
the sharing of this data

[00:18:24.300]
is becoming very advantageous

[00:18:26.650]
for smaller exploration groups in terms of

[00:18:31.070]
sharing geophysical information and how is that happening?

[00:18:38.850]
<v ->I think it’s extremely advantageous</v>

[00:18:40.750]
because it speeds up

[00:18:44.210]
the process, the accessibility

[00:18:48.583]
to resources and data,

[00:18:53.350]
to the mid-tiers and the junior exploration companies

[00:18:56.420]
via either consultants or via their internal teams.

[00:19:00.730]
You know.

[00:19:02.210]
The speed and what’s required,

[00:19:05.820]
and the decision-making process is proportional

[00:19:09.035]
to your spend.

[00:19:11.445]
And having those data,

[00:19:13.120]
certainly improves your explorations

[00:19:15.670]
and efficiencies and decreases the risk.

[00:19:25.040]
<v ->Great, Steve, I’m going to ask you a question</v>

[00:19:28.430]
now that you’re back again.

[00:19:31.270]
I had the same question that I posed to Katherine.

[00:19:35.300]
Do you see that

[00:19:37.650]
open-access available geophysical data

[00:19:40.680]
and interpretation products, are they valuable

[00:19:43.390]
for you and your team?

[00:19:48.859]
<v ->Yes, they are phenomenally valuable.</v>

[00:19:51.150]
In fact, capturing open file data and processing it

[00:19:55.700]
in the manner that we think

[00:19:57.407]
are most relevant to our projects

[00:20:00.350]
is something that we spend a lot of time on.

[00:20:02.560]
I think that there’s certainly place in the world for both

[00:20:06.240]
in the context that sometimes

[00:20:07.700]
our geologists or ourselves

[00:20:10.183]
love to have something that’s provided

[00:20:12.310]
that an expert has already made a decision on

[00:20:14.350]
and said, this is what we think is going to

[00:20:16.360]
be best for you, or to help you.

[00:20:18.370]
But also to have the ability just

[00:20:19.830]
to pull out the raw data and just say you know what,

[00:20:22.970]
we are going to do something different with it entirely.

[00:20:26.500]
And I think, like Barry sort of said a bit earlier,

[00:20:29.840]
I think the point though of training and education

[00:20:32.830]
and knowing what to do with the data

[00:20:34.720]
and also if I may go on a quick tangent and say also

[00:20:37.407]
how to actually process model and then use the data

[00:20:40.640]
is just going to be so important in this.

[00:20:42.410]
Because as I said before, the technologies

[00:20:46.196]
are growing very rapidly and our ability

[00:20:48.080]
to make really good and pretty models

[00:20:53.360]
is so rapid

[00:20:55.620]
that we can sort of, if we’re not careful,

[00:20:58.210]
cover our eyes and just sort of push a button

[00:21:00.110]
and get an answer in a way that would have

[00:21:02.120]
just crashed the software or the system, 10 years ago.

[00:21:05.000]
So just because we can do it,

[00:21:07.670]
we do need to know how we’re doing it because

[00:21:10.941]
it won’t pull us up and crash if we stuff it up.

[00:21:13.030]
So we just need to make sure that we are using it

[00:21:16.380]
in the right way but having it and having the ability

[00:21:19.710]
to dig our teeth in, fantastic.

[00:21:23.930]
<v ->Excellent.</v>

[00:21:26.100]
Thanks Steve.

[00:21:27.910]
I’ll pass over to Dr. Teagan Blaikie with a question.

[00:21:31.550]
What exciting novel developments

[00:21:33.360]
are happening in geophysical exploration

[00:21:35.800]
and how are research organizations enabling industry

[00:21:38.600]
to take advantage of these enhancements?

[00:21:44.640]
<v ->Thanks Mark, I’m seeing lots of exciting developments</v>

[00:21:47.590]
happening in this space.

[00:21:49.310]
I guess what we’re seeing is really increased collaboration

[00:21:52.590]
between government and research organizations

[00:21:55.210]
which is leading to really a new generation

[00:21:58.070]
of geophysical datasets and interpretive products

[00:22:00.310]
that are really aimed at helping industry make

[00:22:03.350]
more informed decisions about their exploration programs.

[00:22:06.420]
So in the last couple of years,

[00:22:07.580]
we’ve seen a lot of large acquisition programs

[00:22:10.520]
for pre-competitive geophysical data completed

[00:22:13.380]
by Geoscience Australia and the State geological surveys.

[00:22:17.380]
So there’ve been a number of large gravity

[00:22:18.880]
and magnetic surveys acquired and we’re also seeing

[00:22:21.310]
acquisition of AEM passive, seismic, and MT data

[00:22:24.990]
being gradually rolled out across the whole continent.

[00:22:28.550]
So these DAD datasets were initially acquired

[00:22:31.600]
in Greenfield areas felt to be highly respected

[00:22:33.850]
but they’re gradually being rolled out

[00:22:35.020]
across the entire country.

[00:22:37.690]
So government’s working on this data themselves

[00:22:39.450]
or they’re also collaborating with research organizations

[00:22:42.190]
such as CSIRO to provide interpretive products

[00:22:44.910]
for this data.

[00:22:46.260]
And these include products such as solar geology,

[00:22:49.370]
and structural interpretations of the data,

[00:22:51.900]
outputs from inversions.

[00:22:54.650]
And all this information is then fed into

[00:22:58.640]
these like prospectivity maps and trying to understand

[00:23:00.730]
mineral systems at a regional scale

[00:23:03.787]
and producing these maps and mineral prospectivity

[00:23:06.200]
across the entire continent.

[00:23:08.830]
And all this data is being made freely available

[00:23:12.820]
to industry to help them make informed decisions

[00:23:15.210]
about their exploration programs.

[00:23:17.630]
I think other exciting areas of research that we’re seeing,

[00:23:19.980]
we’re seeing increased focused on the linkage

[00:23:22.440]
between geology and geophysics

[00:23:25.200]
which is leading to increased connection

[00:23:26.670]
between researchers from different disciplines.

[00:23:30.680]
For example in understanding sediment-hosted resources,

[00:23:34.080]
we’re getting researchers in geophysics to come together

[00:23:36.190]
with sedimentologists, structural geologists and geochemists

[00:23:40.240]
to try and link observations

[00:23:42.060]
and interpretations from geophysical models

[00:23:44.430]
with what they’re seeing in changing facies distributions

[00:23:48.370]
or geochemical conditions across the basin

[00:23:51.380]
which is leading to improved understanding

[00:23:53.470]
of mineral systems within these sedimentary systems.

[00:23:58.110]
<v ->Great, thanks Dr. Teagan.</v>

[00:23:59.280]
I have a question, follow on question for Katherine

[00:24:03.190]
around those outputs and data that you’ve described.

[00:24:07.060]
Katherine, how are you and how is your team

[00:24:09.410]
using that data that industry and research groups

[00:24:13.760]
is providing and,

[00:24:16.490]
how does it add or change the story of

[00:24:19.890]
an exploration project?

[00:24:27.800]
<v ->The research work.</v>

[00:24:29.990]
The research work and the government data

[00:24:31.810]
that’s being published

[00:24:34.660]
is used in different ways

[00:24:40.930]
depending on where we are,

[00:24:42.090]
what stage of exploration we’re at.

[00:24:44.010]
So, say for an initial new area stage,

[00:24:48.500]
obviously from the interpretation point of view,

[00:24:50.760]
understanding the physical properties

[00:24:55.200]
from the data of

[00:24:57.650]
what systems could be used to target from,

[00:25:03.052]
or to understand this.

[00:25:03.885]
You know, it’s used from a structural point of view,

[00:25:09.570]
a particular research is used

[00:25:15.870]
to look at it from a different point of view.

[00:25:18.910]
Possibly, the research that’s done

[00:25:20.570]
come from a different angle,

[00:25:22.670]
looked at different aspects

[00:25:26.290]
of the data but also using a different method

[00:25:29.420]
to look at the data.

[00:25:31.550]
And then we sometimes take those methods

[00:25:34.130]
and it may be in one particular area and try

[00:25:36.290]
and apply what they’ve done elsewhere,

[00:25:41.971]
as a new idea.

[00:25:43.110]
So it’s used in all sorts of ways,

[00:25:46.420]
we could sit here and discuss it for ages,

[00:25:49.790]
it gives you an overall picture.

[00:25:51.510]
Sometimes, you know, you’ve got such a large span of data,

[00:25:55.740]
it gives you an understanding of

[00:25:57.130]
the tectonic environment that we’re in.

[00:26:00.850]
You know, when we possibly got an area that’s,

[00:26:04.300]
you know postage size stamp area, our camp scale area,

[00:26:08.960]
and we want to understand the regional tectonics,

[00:26:11.370]
so we use that data

[00:26:13.840]
to deal with that.

[00:26:16.170]
It’s not often used as a targeting tool

[00:26:19.260]
because of the sparsity of the data

[00:26:22.050]
or the resolution of the data that’s there,

[00:26:24.660]
but it’s certainly given us an indication.

[00:26:26.850]
We’ve even used the data in Infield

[00:26:29.521]
and got a more deep and more

[00:26:32.350]
higher resolution data set

[00:26:34.230]
for what we’re dealing with it.

[00:26:35.430]
The use of the data is endless

[00:26:38.220]
not just from a mineral exploration point of view

[00:26:41.230]
but we’ve also used it for water resources.

[00:26:47.909]
Like we keep saying, it’s just so valuable.

[00:26:53.610]
<v ->Great, thanks Katherine and just a quick one back,</v>

[00:26:56.060]
to Teagan, how are the different ways

[00:26:59.370]
that you present and share that data?

[00:27:01.590]
Cause you did mention quite a few different

[00:27:04.280]
interpretation products, can you just give a brief overview

[00:27:07.810]
of how that information is shared with industry?

[00:27:14.800]
<v ->Yeah, thanks Mark.</v>

[00:27:16.260]
We share the data through many different ways.

[00:27:18.133]
So there’s you know, traditional reports

[00:27:21.070]
that accompany any project that we complete,

[00:27:23.920]
that will get published.

[00:27:26.090]
If we’re working with the State geological surveys,

[00:27:27.860]
they’ll publish the data on some of their portals.

[00:27:31.010]
And if not, they’ll be say published on a CSIRO data portal.

[00:27:37.720]
The information is also distributed

[00:27:39.870]
through open-access publications where we can

[00:27:43.170]
and we’re very active in engaging in conferences

[00:27:47.080]
and industry events, and actually presenting

[00:27:49.480]
and communicating the results of our research

[00:27:53.450]
at these events.

[00:27:58.600]
<v ->Great, thanks Teagan.</v>

[00:28:00.870]
Barry, I’m going to pass it over to you now.

[00:28:04.480]
As a consultant, how are you finding,

[00:28:06.960]
how are you connecting with your mining customers

[00:28:09.770]
to provide informed insights?

[00:28:12.340]
And what formerly disparate data are now

[00:28:14.750]
being integrated to add value to projects?

[00:28:18.290]
Also, are there challenges still to be overcome?

[00:28:24.680]
<v ->Yeah, thanks Mark.</v>

[00:28:26.350]
So firstly on that, you know, we as a consultant

[00:28:29.980]
to the majority of you know,

[00:28:32.460]
mid-tier to small-tier companies,

[00:28:34.090]
we have a slightly different role to play because

[00:28:38.374]
we’re the technical experts that help them link

[00:28:41.570]
all this information that’s available

[00:28:45.560]
to companies that don’t have internal technical expertise.

[00:28:49.420]
There’s certainly a knowledge base there

[00:28:51.490]
but they don’t actually have

[00:28:54.788]
the experience and the personnel to do that.

[00:28:57.520]
So first of all, we provide that link

[00:29:01.460]
to those companies

[00:29:03.060]
and also they rely on our knowledge base

[00:29:06.060]
in order to provide that information.

[00:29:10.640]
More and more companies are trying to

[00:29:15.210]
understand the link between geology and geophysics.

[00:29:22.116]
With the increasingly fewer graduates

[00:29:25.440]
and experienced people in the industry,

[00:29:28.920]
there’s a larger reliance

[00:29:31.790]
on consultants and technical experts

[00:29:35.250]
out there in industry to fill that gap.

[00:29:40.500]
So moving on from that you know, how,

[00:29:43.133]
do we provide those missing pieces?

[00:29:45.640]
And first of all, you know,

[00:29:47.560]
it’s via petrophysical analysis.

[00:29:50.750]
You know that really links the gap between

[00:29:53.250]
what the explorationists are doing out there,

[00:29:57.040]
the a priori in knowledge of the ore systems

[00:30:00.690]
they’re looking for, the results they’ve got to date.

[00:30:04.877]
You know, we’re engaged at a certain time period

[00:30:10.245]
within that process and it’s not often that we get to sit

[00:30:16.195]
with the explorationists through the whole process,

[00:30:19.020]
so we’re only engaged at critical times.

[00:30:21.180]
So, you know,

[00:30:24.040]
trying to understand their problems,

[00:30:27.690]
collecting a little bit of additional information

[00:30:29.447]
via petrophysics and/or our ore body knowledge base.

[00:30:34.890]
Providing that information in a timely and effective way

[00:30:39.710]
to minimize budget and risk in that exploration processes

[00:30:44.060]
is how we engage with those people.

[00:30:49.129]
And when we integrate that information into a 3D approach,

[00:30:54.200]
when we’ve got, you know when everyone’s engaged,

[00:30:57.230]
even by a few constraints, be it geological constraints,

[00:31:02.330]
foal constraints, fuel constraints,

[00:31:04.230]
and physical constraints.

[00:31:06.060]
We can improve our outcomes and our decision-making ability

[00:31:10.840]
tremendously, determining you know solarized geometry

[00:31:15.232]
whether it’s worth pursuing or not,

[00:31:17.110]
making those critical exploration decisions

[00:31:20.000]
to move a project and exploration forward.

[00:31:27.480]
<v ->Excellent, thanks Barry.</v>

[00:31:28.610]
And just on that, those points around adding

[00:31:33.230]
all this information, continuing that story

[00:31:35.510]
and making that more valuable to

[00:31:39.510]
the explorationists and exploration geology teams.

[00:31:43.630]
Is there any gaps

[00:31:45.220]
that you see in terms of challenges

[00:31:48.480]
and things that

[00:31:51.410]
research and software providers

[00:31:53.010]
such as Seequent and others,

[00:31:55.460]
could do to make that

[00:31:57.510]
connection better and to

[00:32:01.760]
help get those projects going?

[00:32:07.670]
<v ->I think we’ve come a long way in our ability</v>

[00:32:10.440]
to integrate data and, you know, with products like,

[00:32:17.017]
you know Seequent for example

[00:32:18.560]
and other integration packages,

[00:32:20.110]
the mining package has come a long way

[00:32:22.310]
and their ability to integrate

[00:32:24.940]
all that data is tremendous.

[00:32:26.960]
You know, what we are lacking now is fundamental research

[00:32:31.070]
in some of the big data that we’re collecting.

[00:32:33.840]
Things like electromagnetics

[00:32:37.230]
in the MT space, you know we’re really,

[00:32:41.330]
I think we’re struggling, we’ve hit a bit of a plateau

[00:32:43.890]
on research into inversion codes.

[00:32:51.410]
We’ve really struggled with

[00:32:55.040]
true EM inversion codes in terms of airborne EM.

[00:33:05.450]
The existing research has been done in consortiums

[00:33:10.110]
and I think the way forward

[00:33:12.680]
is less of a collaborative approach and more in a

[00:33:17.060]
open-source style of codes

[00:33:19.987]
where everyone is going to be contributing

[00:33:22.420]
from industry and research

[00:33:25.722]
to a common set of goals

[00:33:27.880]
in an environment which is conducive

[00:33:29.710]
to collaborative import.

[00:33:37.130]
<v ->Great, thanks Barry.</v>

[00:33:38.670]
Dr. Steve, would you like to comment on some

[00:33:40.950]
of those points that Barry brought in

[00:33:45.000]
around sort of the challenges associated with

[00:33:49.030]
still integrating those various data sets together.

[00:33:51.920]
What has been your experience in

[00:33:55.380]
sort of connecting those dots and really informing

[00:33:57.910]
those decisions there at FMG?

[00:34:04.550]
<v ->Yeah, thanks Mark.</v>

[00:34:06.080]
Look I guess, from my own perspective

[00:34:09.200]
and I’m quite passionate about this,

[00:34:12.380]
is as we build the capacity to actually integrate

[00:34:15.490]
those data sets and I think, you know,

[00:34:18.320]
in a model space, we have a pretty strong ability

[00:34:21.700]
to do so from the point of view

[00:34:23.640]
of just the pure mechanics

[00:34:26.145]
of the software to actually sort of make it happen.

[00:34:28.040]
And I think that that’s a blessing and a curse.

[00:34:29.860]
So something like Leapfrog is fantastic

[00:34:33.570]
and I just remember when it first came out,

[00:34:35.240]
it sort of opened up the world of 3D modeling

[00:34:37.590]
to pretty much every geologist out there.

[00:34:39.920]
Whereas before, you had to be quite specialized

[00:34:42.570]
with you know, I think OCAD, or Vulcan, or Micromine

[00:34:45.220]
or something and it just,

[00:34:46.340]
the barrier it went through was much higher.

[00:34:48.380]
But on the flip side,

[00:34:50.870]
again it means that we can integrate things

[00:34:54.580]
that, how they should be integrated,

[00:34:57.270]
should they really be integrated and all those sorts

[00:34:59.250]
of questions still remain to be answered.

[00:35:01.280]
So for example the idea of a geophysical model

[00:35:04.220]
and a geophysical reality versus

[00:35:06.300]
a geological model and a geological reality.

[00:35:09.682]
And what data is actually coming in from the geochemistry?

[00:35:12.100]
What data was a structural piece of information,

[00:35:14.940]
the surface, or a drill hole or something?

[00:35:17.350]
Or what is just purely a rendition

[00:35:20.797]
of something that’s expressed itself

[00:35:22.120]
in the geophysical data that wasn’t obvious

[00:35:23.910]
in the drill holes and vice versa?

[00:35:25.843]
And how we actually pull that together

[00:35:28.160]
and communicate what came from what?

[00:35:32.249]
And take something like a Leapfrog model

[00:35:34.040]
that has a huge variety and scope of data

[00:35:36.940]
that have gone into making it

[00:35:38.580]
but also understand where that information

[00:35:41.600]
came from and how it got in there.

[00:35:44.750]
Is still going to be, I think, the key problem there.

[00:35:47.760]
So I think I agree with everything that Barry said

[00:35:51.230]
and yeah, just adding to that, that the once we try

[00:35:53.520]
to get all these things into that workspace.

[00:35:56.200]
How do we make sure that the end user can either

[00:35:58.680]
make sense of it, if they’re not technical expert?

[00:36:02.360]
Or have the information that they need

[00:36:04.260]
to not misunderstand or misuse

[00:36:07.200]
what we’ve put together for them?

[00:36:10.050]
I don’t have a good solution to it but,

[00:36:12.525]
I think there’s a number of things that could be done

[00:36:14.280]
but that’s what I think the challenge is really going to be.

[00:36:20.700]
<v ->Excellent, so I have a bit</v>

[00:36:22.500]
of a closing question for the group.

[00:36:25.900]
As we enter a post-COVID work environment,

[00:36:29.740]
which new geophysics workflows that have come in

[00:36:33.010]
have benefited our geoscience teams

[00:36:35.760]
and which will fall aside as organizations

[00:36:38.220]
reconsider their exploration workflows?

[00:36:41.310]
So a bit of a broad question and I’d like it

[00:36:45.270]
to sort of lead into a closing remark

[00:36:47.770]
as well, about this as well.

[00:36:51.190]
Katherine, I’ll pose the question first to you.

[00:36:59.220]
<v ->Yeah, thanks Mark.</v>

[00:37:03.170]
I don’t think during this COVID period

[00:37:05.850]
our workflow has necessarily changed dramatically

[00:37:10.250]
but I think one thing we’ve realized or appreciated more

[00:37:14.590]
is the importance of the communication.

[00:37:17.420]
The face-to-face communication

[00:37:21.906]
and a team discussion between say

[00:37:25.450]
different geologists, geophysicists,

[00:37:29.170]
you know, the structural geologist.

[00:37:31.360]
The importance of that communication

[00:37:34.150]
has been the realization of how valuable it is

[00:37:37.900]
when it’s taken away from you for a little while.

[00:37:40.540]
We have the Teams and we have the WebEx’s

[00:37:42.830]
and the different platforms that we can work with

[00:37:46.160]
but that sit down discussion face-to-face

[00:37:52.830]
is getting better developed within that digital space.

[00:37:56.820]
But we still, I think we lost the value of it

[00:38:01.260]
there for a while and now it’s just,

[00:38:03.660]
it’s standing out as being invaluable, obviously.

[00:38:10.510]
<v ->Yeah there’s so much to be said isn’t there</v>

[00:38:12.320]
for just the verbal communication,

[00:38:14.900]
just being able to

[00:38:17.070]
have a cup of coffee together

[00:38:19.530]
or have that nonverbal communication I guess, as well.

[00:38:24.860]
Maybe Dr. Teagan, would, you know,

[00:38:27.250]
how is this different for you?

[00:38:28.570]
Did you see a change in your workflow or

[00:38:33.400]
recently with the

[00:38:37.150]
new way we have to work?

[00:38:42.220]
<v ->Thanks Mark, I’d say most of our workloads</v>

[00:38:45.040]
have remained the same.

[00:38:47.760]
I guess what’s

[00:38:49.860]
benefited us is,

[00:38:52.150]
you know, we’ve rapidly had to adjust

[00:38:53.830]
to I guess, working on online

[00:38:56.650]
and to have come in and out of lockdown.

[00:38:58.540]
But sort of as we’re emerging from that,

[00:39:02.640]
we’ve really started to transition into more flexibility,

[00:39:05.410]
whether you work from home or the office and,

[00:39:08.580]
you know, the advance in being able to work with data stored

[00:39:12.150]
on the cloud, everything’s more accessible,

[00:39:15.480]
has really sort of flowed into

[00:39:17.260]
these sort of new working arrangements.

[00:39:20.140]
And ultimately just this flexibility

[00:39:22.150]
has really helped in productivity within the team,

[00:39:24.390]
as people are able to choose where and when

[00:39:27.210]
is more convenient to work for them.

[00:39:30.250]
Obviously coming together face-to-face

[00:39:32.963]
is invaluable but just that added flexibility

[00:39:36.740]
is really benefiting some of our teams.

[00:39:43.210]
<v ->Great, Steve have you seen a change</v>

[00:39:44.860]
in the way that you’ve been operating in

[00:39:47.650]
and doing your projects together

[00:39:49.610]
or is this pretty much the same?

[00:39:51.330]
Is it still the same workflows?

[00:39:58.020]
<v ->Thanks Mark.</v>

[00:39:58.885]
Yeah, look I think I’d echo

[00:39:59.810]
what the other two panelists before me just said.

[00:40:04.230]
And that’s that the workflows themselves

[00:40:07.510]
have not fundamentally changed

[00:40:09.200]
but our working environment has.

[00:40:11.530]
I think right at the early stages of COVID

[00:40:13.717]
and sort of less so now, there was a pretty rapid move

[00:40:17.030]
to make sure that we actually had

[00:40:19.080]
the hardware and software set up

[00:40:21.050]
to facilitate this transition

[00:40:22.500]
to more of a flexible working environment.

[00:40:24.450]
But as the others have said,

[00:40:29.140]
the big thing here is you know,

[00:40:31.180]
nothing’s changed in the human biology in the last two years

[00:40:34.730]
and communication is still fundamentally non-verbal.

[00:40:37.730]
Plus on top of that, there’s no substitute

[00:40:39.650]
for standing right next to someone

[00:40:40.820]
and wiggling your fingers at a model

[00:40:43.040]
or even just the idea of communicating

[00:40:46.090]
with people around the office when you’re not

[00:40:48.040]
in an actual meeting or structured time

[00:40:50.540]
but just that unstructured ability

[00:40:52.480]
to just chew the fat, communicate,

[00:40:55.320]
where so many of these ideas just hatch.

[00:40:57.080]
So I think that we need to take

[00:40:58.900]
all the best aspects of these developments.

[00:41:02.480]
Things like Teams, things like cloud-computing

[00:41:04.630]
and leverage those as much as we can,

[00:41:06.450]
especially as international explorers

[00:41:09.140]
but not forget the value and to fight tooth and nail

[00:41:12.980]
to just make sure that we are actually together,

[00:41:16.010]
physically in the same place as often as we can be.

[00:41:22.000]
<v ->Great and Barry, I’ll just pass over to you now</v>

[00:41:24.630]
just to finish this session off as well

[00:41:27.670]
with some closing remarks as well.

[00:41:31.814]
Have you seen a change in your workflows?

[00:41:34.870]
Do you want to raise some comments around that

[00:41:36.810]
or some questions you want to leave the audience with as well?

[00:41:42.150]
Around, you know, how that’s changed and what could,

[00:41:45.650]
you know, what should remain as well as we go forward?

[00:41:50.160]
<v ->Yeah.</v>

[00:41:51.960]
I think our workflows,

[00:41:54.740]
you know they might not be apparent that they’ve changed

[00:41:57.210]
but I think they’ve changed significantly.

[00:42:00.740]
You know, in my opinion, the effort

[00:42:03.310]
that research organizations, governments,

[00:42:06.450]
and even in different groups

[00:42:09.650]
that’s gone into accessing data in real-time

[00:42:15.592]
has been overwhelming.

[00:42:17.130]
You know, that in turn has led to

[00:42:21.540]
accelerated data access

[00:42:25.530]
and has enabled us to

[00:42:28.730]
de-risk a lot of our things that we’re doing,

[00:42:31.600]
you know, integration of data inversions.

[00:42:35.505]
We’re not cornered into just doing one inversion.

[00:42:38.320]
We can do several, or we can do multiple inversions.

[00:42:40.530]
We can do constraints.

[00:42:42.330]
It’s just giving us,

[00:42:43.610]
so much more flexibility and freedom

[00:42:47.370]
via that data accessibility and also,

[00:42:52.320]
you know, we’ve improved the way that

[00:42:56.476]
we’re processing those data in particular inversions.

[00:43:00.750]
I think it’s improved significantly.

[00:43:09.170]
<v ->All right, so thanks everyone for that,</v>

[00:43:11.710]
for your inputs today.

[00:43:13.860]
It would be great just to have a closing sentence

[00:43:16.110]
from each person just around, you know,

[00:43:18.280]
what you would like to leave the audience with.

[00:43:20.690]
Maybe a statement or something you’d like to see.

[00:43:24.590]
Just a closing statement for the discussion.

[00:43:26.630]
So I’ll start with Dr. Teagan,

[00:43:28.670]
just a very short, maybe a sentence or two.

[00:43:36.720]
<v ->Thanks Mark.</v>

[00:43:38.070]
Well, I’d just like to say thank you for the opportunity

[00:43:40.820]
to participate in this panel discussion.

[00:43:43.610]
I’ve found it incredibly valuable to hear

[00:43:46.130]
what the other panelists have to say

[00:43:48.320]
about some of the challenges they’re facing

[00:43:51.190]
and some of the workflows they’re implementing

[00:43:53.360]
within geophysical modeling.

[00:43:59.410]
<v ->Katherine, how do you,</v>

[00:44:01.360]
do you want to add some closing remarks around the

[00:44:03.860]
statement today, what should the audience take away?

[00:44:10.570]
<v ->Yeah Mark, that’s an interesting one.</v>

[00:44:13.930]
Thanks once again for the panel, I think it’s been great

[00:44:15.730]
and I think it’s great to share these ideas.

[00:44:18.570]
And it is also reflective of the environment we’re in

[00:44:22.213]
that we can have something like a panel discussion

[00:44:25.120]
and not be face-to-face per se, be it digital,

[00:44:27.940]
and I think that’s certainly something.

[00:44:30.360]
If I was going to have walk away with an idea is the,

[00:44:34.480]
value of data and the amount of data

[00:44:37.320]
that is out there and how we’re looking at it.

[00:44:40.250]
And I think the future

[00:44:42.540]
is kind of in our hands in a way

[00:44:44.550]
of trying to optimize the best way to do it.

[00:44:47.590]
How can we make it that, that is an advantage?

[00:44:50.570]
I mean, all this data is being collected

[00:44:52.060]
and all this research is being done.

[00:44:53.910]
And how can we use that

[00:44:57.070]
to our advantage for discovery?

[00:45:02.110]
<v ->Excellent, passing on to you, Dr. Steve.</v>

[00:45:04.450]
What should the audience take away?

[00:45:09.180]
<v ->Yeah, thanks Mark, look like everyone else,</v>

[00:45:11.800]
I thank my colleagues on the panel,

[00:45:13.410]
it’s great to hear some different opinions

[00:45:15.020]
and all very similar opinions around the place.

[00:45:17.900]
I’ll be a bit of a broken record here I think,

[00:45:19.780]
and just say the same thing which is that you know,

[00:45:22.849]
the pre-competitive and government data sets are amazing.

[00:45:26.330]
The improvements in technology processing power,

[00:45:28.900]
hardware, software, the whole lot has been fantastic

[00:45:31.000]
and let’s keep that coming.

[00:45:32.390]
And as we do it, let’s just make sure

[00:45:34.750]
that as scientists and as communicators,

[00:45:36.680]
we move in lockstep with that.

[00:45:38.480]
Make sure that the actual knowledge

[00:45:39.873]
and understanding of what we’re doing

[00:45:42.020]
doesn’t fall behind the amazing things

[00:45:44.700]
that we’re able to produce now and into the future.

[00:45:50.960]
<v ->Great Steve, and we’ll finish off with you, Barry.</v>

[00:45:54.800]
What’s your closing remarks for the session?

[00:45:56.610]
So thank you for attending as well,

[00:45:58.050]
to all of the panelists today.

[00:46:01.120]
<v ->Yeah and a big thanks to yourself</v>

[00:46:02.850]
as well Mark and Seequent as well.

[00:46:05.810]
You know, I think we’ve just got to keep striving

[00:46:09.030]
for complete data integration and

[00:46:13.673]
via whatever means we can and that’s going to

[00:46:15.750]
include and improve our exploration process

[00:46:19.350]
and our exploration success.

[00:46:24.990]
<v ->Thanks to everyone here on the panel today.</v>

[00:46:26.880]
I really appreciate you joining us today

[00:46:29.500]
and I’m sure it was very interesting.

[00:46:32.890]
And to hear those insights today, definitely was for me.

[00:46:36.920]
I appreciate all the panelists joining today,

[00:46:39.200]
as well as that you joined Lyceum 2021.

[00:46:44.619]
(futuristic music)