The South African radioactive decay of metal specks inside gold nuggets might have facilitated an international group of scientists determine the origin of the world’s prevalent gold deposit.
In, the past 120 years, almost 40 percent of all gold mined during recorded history has come from Witwatersrand Basin “the Rand” in South Africa.
Scientists estimate approximately one-third of the world’s gold resources still lie undiscovered in the nine million acres of this sea bed or ancient lake.
“The gold is older than the surrounding rock, having washed into the basin from streams and rivers from nearby and highlands and mountains much as the gold deposits in California that triggered the gold rush there did,” said by the placer model.
On the other hand, the hydrothermal model says “the hot spring fluids deposited the gold inside the rocks”.
To resolve the argument, the international group of scientists in Australia and Britain decided to define the age of the gold itself.
If they discovered that gold is older than the rocks, then the rocks must have built up around the gold, bolstering the placer model.
Kirk said: “If the gold is newer than the rocks that mean it must have leached in with fluids, supportive the hydrothermal model. Gold is certainly not pure. It always has something in it.”
Kirk said: “It goes out gold from three places in the Rand is three billion years old, “a quarter of a billion years elder than its surrounding rock.”
What the team said explains and evidences so much that The Witwatersrand Basin is the origin of the largest gold deposit in the world.