As a part of the CRC MinEx and the National Drilling Initiative (NDI) we have an opportunity for a Ph.D. student in geomicrobial genomics. The position includes industry top-up and internship opportunities for successful applicants.
Looking at the diversity of microbes associated with deep bore water samples, and also the resistance mechanisms that enable their survival in these extreme environments we can develop a spatial abundance model that can be integrated into the NDI data portal.
1. Characterise the microbial communities (amplicon sequencing) in NDI deep bore water samples to map regional geomicrobiology and community architecture
2. Correlate regolith geochemistry with these microbial communities to develop a spatial model for new mineral systems.
3. Perform metagenomic analyses of samples from a range of samples with known levels of heavy minerals (Au, Cu, etc) to identify genes responsible for resistance.
4. Overlay and interrogate resistance gene correlations with drilling strategy to test model robustness.
5. Identify microbial processes associated with the presence of heavy metal ore deposits and the characteristics of their biosignature in bore water samples. MinEx CRC is the world’s largest mineral exploration collaboration bringing together Industry, Government, and Research Organisations. Central to the aims of the CRC are the three research programs, Drilling Technologies, Data From Drilling, and the National Drilling Initiative.