GeoResources and Geomaterials Research Group – GRG (G3)
The GRG (G3) research group strategy is framed in the goal nº 12 UN SGD and the on-going projects. Within the GRG the research focuses on two main areas (Georesources and Geomaterials), namely: (i) LCT pegmatites and deposits of rare elements associated with granites for the identification of genesis, age and mode of occurrence to improve exploration programs and processing technologies, and to improve and develop methods of evaluation of industrial wastes to promote recycling; and, (ii) the characterization of natural and anthropogenic geomaterials for the promotion of critical metals recovery, in the scope of geoarchaeological and architectural and civil engineering purposes, and in studies of soils and sediments for forensic applications.
LCT pegmatites and deposits of rare elements associated with granites:
Multidisciplinary studies are under development on mineralization in the Iberian Variscan Belt. The research aims to study rare-element deposits (Li, Sn, Nb, Ta, W, Mo, Au and REE) and their relationship with hydrothermal alterations together with the determination of the genesis P-T-X conditions. Considering the strategic importance of Li, the study of pegmatites evolution and the structural control of the veins is in progress. A multidisciplinary approach on the petrophysical, geophysical, and geochemical characterization of granite bodies and their emplacement mechanisms are currently being performed in areas where mineralizations occur.
Organic petrology and geochemistry studies are under development on: i) coals, black shales and fly ash as non-conventional deposits of critical materials; ii) coals and coal waste containing environmental sensitive elements (including toxic chemicals) and affected by spontaneous combustion; iii) organic matter in soils to obtain helpful information for the sustainable management of soils and land use, mainly the ones affected by wildfires; iv) solid bitumen to identify fluid migration pathways and thermal history of sedimentary basins.
Geological methods are being applied on the characterization of geomaterials for different purposes: i) forensic investigation with studies on surface soil and sediments to pursuit the database within the protocol with Police Scientific Laboratory; ii) ornamental rocks for industrial uses; iii) geoarchaeology research in the sourcing and characterization of lithic material; and, iv) characterization of ores giving indications for ore processing.
Remote sensing and image processing are a complementary tool for geological and environmental applications with the development of GIS tools in open source code.
GRG studies are linked with other ICT groups to reinforce the strategy framed in the goal nº 12 UN SGD, mainly connected with G5 with research in the Iberian Variscan Belt and the G1 and G6 providing the geomaterials characterization to assess air, soil and water pollution and exposure to toxic chemicals.