Department of Geology of Mineral Deposits
The main common scientific objective of the Department is the creation and upgrade of complex models of mineral deposits in Western Carpathians. They include genetic models, prognosis, investigation of raw materials and related technologies, and environmental impacts of mining. Currently, most attention is paid to gold-bearing deposits and occurrences, and industrial minerals of environmental application (bentonites, perlites, zeolites). The newly prepared projects are focused on deposits containing critical elements (W, Co). Research devoted to metallogeny and genesis of ore and industrial mineral deposit has a long tradition at our department, and it is using the latest advanced methods of investigation, using facilities in various national and foreign laboratories and application of computer modelling in geo-information systems. The department also host a school of clay mineralogy that was formed over 40 years ago. The school is focused on research of clay materials (sorbents, barriers, filling materials, etc.), as well as in the interpretation of geologic processes (e.g. illite-smectite geothermometry, diagenetic history of sedimentary basins, reconstruction of paleo-environments). Development of methodologies for the research of micro- and nano-minerals by XRD methods and transmission and scanning electron microscopy plays a significant role in this research. Assessment of the environmental risk of exploitation of raw materials and projects related to remediation and recovery of areas affected by mining, including the use of environmental raw materials, is another important scientific direction of the Department. The research is focused on the evaluation of potentially dangerous mine waste and its possible further use as a source of valuable raw materials, in particular the critical metals.