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Journal of the Southern African Institute of Mining and Metallurgy

On-line version ISSN 2411-9717
Print version ISSN 0038-223X


AGTERBERG, F.. Self-similarity and multiplicative cascade models. J. S. Afr. Inst. Min. Metall. [online]. 2015, vol.115, n.1, pp.1-11. ISSN 2411-9717.

In his 1978 monograph 'Lognormal-de Wijsian Geostatistics for Ore Evaluation', Professor Danie Krige emphasized the scale-independence of gold and uranium determinations in the Witwatersrand goldfields. It was later established in nonlinear process theory that the original model of de Wijs used by Krige was the earliest example of a multifractal generated by a multiplicative cascade process. Its end product is an assemblage of chemical element concentration values for blocks that are both lognormally distributed and spatially correlated. Variants of de Wijsian geostatistics had already been used by Professor Georges Matheron to explain Krige's original formula for the relationship between the block variances as well as permanence of frequency distributions for element concentration in blocks of different sizes. Further extensions of this basic approach are concerned with modelling the three-parameter lognormal distribution, the 'sampling error', as well as the 'nugget effect' and 'range' in variogram modelling. This paper is mainly a review of recent multifractal theory, which throws new light on the original findings by Professor Krige on self-similarity of gold and uranium patterns at different scales for blocks of ore by (a) generalizing the original model of de Wijs to account for random cuts; (b) using an accelerated dispersion model to explain the appearance of a third parameter in the lognormal distribution of Witwatersrand gold determinations; and (c) considering that Krige's sampling error is caused by shape differences between single ore sections and reef areas.

Keywords : lognormal-de Wijsian geostatistics; self-similarity; multifractals; nugget effect; Witwatersrand goldfields.

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