The main aim of my project is to determine the distribution of the copper deposits in the Kabul basin and to develop a genetic model for the Aynak copper deposit in the Logar province of Afghanistan.
Copper is a valuable commodity which continues to be in high demand globally due to the expanding and rapidly growing economies of countries such as India and China; which has led to a rise in exploration of mineral ore and the opening of new mines in neighbouring countries. Because of this, the demands and economic value of copper have been increasing steadily and Afghanistan is well situated to meet these demands.
Around 300 documented deposits, occurrences and showings of copper ore are recorded in Afghanistan. Many of these deposits (around 94) are located in the Kabul Basin including the economically important Aynak, Darband and Jawhar copper deposits. The largest and best known copper discovery in Afghanistan is the world class Aynak, with indicated resource of 240 million tons at a grade of 2.3 per cent copper in the site. It is located about 30 km south-south-east of Kabul.
The Aynak copper deposit has been recently contracted between Afghan government and the Metallurgical Corporation of China (MCC) for three billion US dollars and hopefully the process of mining will start in the next few years.
In order to achieve the aim and objectives of the project, in first stage 36 surface, adits, and drill cores specimens were collected from Kabul copper deposits including world class copper mine of Aynak in Logar province. The samples will be analyzed using the following laboratory techniques:
- Sample characterisation by optical microscopy and SEM
- XRD to identify ore mineralogy and alteration
- XRF and ICP-MS for bulk geochemistry
- Fluid inclusion microscopy for vein samples
- Analyses of carbon, oxygen and sulphur isotope ratios in carbonates and sulphides.