Geologist

A Geologist in mining is specifically responsible for studying the relationship between geology and ore formation with the aim of locating mineral resources. Through this process Geologists are able to give advice on short and long term production plans.

Typical Duties

  • Mapping the bedrock in the the field
  • Mapping drill cores and rock cuttings, and investigating the results
  • Ensure that minerals are extracted from mines, pits and quarries in such a way that maximum profit is obtained with as little damage to the environment as possible
  • Work closely with the drill and blast engineers to determine the best way to blast all of the rock out of the pit floor
  • Study and examine the minerals as they are extracted to assess their quality
  • Analyse and interpret geological data using computer software
  • Locate and estimate mineral ore deposits and prepare geological maps, charts and reports concerning mineral extraction
  • Identify risks for natural disasters such as mud slides and earthquakes
  • Investigate the composition of the earth’s surface
  • Collect samples of natural resources through drilling and other methods
  • Communicate findings in the form of reports, meetings etc.
  • Produce geological maps

Working Conditions

  • Geologists in mining must be prepared to travel to remote locations and may spend some time in the open above ground, or underground where it can be cramped and hot
  • Production sites are often remotely located, and Geologist need to enjoy being in the outdoors
  • Geologists may be required to spend extended time away from home whilst on site. They may be required to live on site away from home, or to work on a fly in fly out basis. FIFO commonly involves flying in for a certain period of time whilst the Geologist would be required to be on site, and then flying home for periods when they are off work
  • Geologists may get to see the world as if working for large international companies, their job will often involve international travel

Educational Requirements

  • Whilst many schools do not offer dedicated geology courses, subjects such as earth science or environmental science are offered and would be good choices for those interested in a career in geology
  • Additional subjects such as biology, chemistry, computers and physics would be advantageous
  • A degree in Geology is often the minimum requirement for entry, although many regions and employers will expect a relevant post graduate qualification such as a masters or doctoral degree in Geology
  • Should you be interested in a Research or Academic position, it will require a doctorate or master’s degree
  • Many of the more senior positions also require an advanced degree in Geology
  • Specialised onsite training is often required

Personal Attributes

  • Have an interest in chemistry, maths and physics
  • Have an interest in the environment and earth sciences
  • Need to be familiar with data, mapping and modelling software, GIS remote sensing equipment etc.
  • Be able to analyse numerical and graphical data
  • li>Identify, analyse and solve problems
  • Be able to embrace new techniques and technologies, and be interested in keeping up to date on industry requirements and advancements
  • Be able to work under pressure
  • Have a good work ethic and be goal oriented
  • Have an ability to work with multidisciplinary teams of engineers and scientists
  • Must be interested in working in remote locations and on mites sites
  • Need to be physically fit

Compensation

  • Geologist typically command good salaries
  • Geologist’s s across the board in mining earn high salaries. Exploration Geologists typically earning the most. However all Geologists also earn very competitive salaries in mining
  • Geologists spend many years studying, work hard and often have to make sacrifices in terms of time spent away from their families, and for this reason it’s important that they are adequately compensated

Salary

  • Find out more about salaries here.

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