South-eastern Australia, in particular Victoria, is one of the most diverse geological regions on the Australian continent. This great geodiversity provides plenty of scope to apply new ideas and techniques, such as radiometric dating, to add to our knowledge of the region’s mineral deposits and the rocks in which they occur.
The main research themes in mineralogy and petrology are:
- investigating secondary mineral assemblages found in weathered sulphide ore deposits;
- documenting new mineral species;
- determining the distribution and origin of Victorian gem minerals, in particular diamonds, sapphires and zircons;
- describing unusual mineral assemblages in volcanic and contact metamorphic rocks; and
- characterising new Victorian meteorites.
In most cases the research is based on specimens either within the existing collections or obtained during fieldwork. The outcomes have enabled Museum Victoria to establish an international reputation for the quality of its mineralogical research.
Dr Bill Birch is the Senior Curator coordinating research projects in mineralogy and petrology at Museum Victoria, and he can provide further information.
View Mineralogy and Petrology projects