Lab-at-Rig® for Mineral Exploration

“This project will lay the foundations of future Lab-at-Rig® platforms that will see the technology applied to new drilling technology, take advantage of new sensor technologies and develop the application beyond current deployment in Greenfields exploration.” Yulia Uvarova, CSIRO


Project 3.2 Lab-at-Rig® is a key component of the DET CRC Lab-at-Rig® research strategy. In Project 3.2 we will provide (1) the underpinning research needed to develop the next generation Lab-at-Rig® system, (2) research, testing and deployment of new sensor technologies as well as the novel application of existing analytical technology, (3) design of advanced algorithms for data processing and decision making and (4) a technical prototype of the Lab-at-Rig® system for Coiled Tube Drilling which is under development in Project 1.1. We will also characterise the interactions between geologic materials and the drilling, sampling and analytical components of the combined CT rig/Lab-at-Rig® system and allow conversion of Lab-at-Rig® data to geological knowledge needed in the application to the minerals sector.

Background and Aims

Project 3.2 “Lab-at-Rig® Futures” includes the following sub-modules:

  1. Future Sensors: Roadmap, Development and Deployment. This module is focused on other sensor systems and their potential use in powder characterisation for geological applications.
  2. Assessing, Testing and Deploying Laser Induced Breakdown Spectroscopy (LIBS) for light elements as a potential next generation sensor in the Lab-at-Rig® system.
  3. Advanced Level ‘0’ Algorithms for LAR Sensors building on pre-existing expertise to improve the application of the modelling of x-ray data.
  4. Data to Knowledge (link to Project 2.3, and application of the ReflexHUB) will deliver the research that turns data into knowledge supporting decision making.
  5. Towards Lab-at-Rig®-Fluids. This research will be carried out in collaboration with Program 1 projects and provides the fundemtnal research that will support design of Lab-at-Rig® for this future drilling platform.
  6. Proof-Of-Concept & Engineering the Lab-at-Rig®-CT will provide the technical planning for the engineering modification and underpinning science for Lab-at-Rig® to work with the Coiled-tubing drilling system.