Mineral Exploration
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2021 ◽  
Vol 13 (22) ◽  
pp. 4687
Edward J. Harrison ◽  
Vikas C. Baranwal ◽  
Andreas A. Pfaffhuber ◽  
Craig W. Christensen ◽  
Guro H. Skurdal ◽  

From the first use of airborne electromagnetic (AEM) systems for remote sensing in the 1950s, AEM data acquisition, processing and inversion technology have rapidly developed. Once used extensively for mineral exploration in its early days, the technology is increasingly being applied in other industries alongside ground-based investigation techniques. This paper reviews the application of onshore AEM in Norway over the past decades. Norway’s rugged terrain and complex post-glacial sedimentary geology have contributed to the later adoption of AEM for widespread mapping compared to neighbouring Nordic countries. We illustrate AEM’s utility by using two detailed case studies, including time-domain and frequency domain AEM. In both cases, we combine AEM with other geophysical, geological and geotechnical drillings to enhance interpretation, including machine learning methods. The end results included bedrock surfaces predicted with an accuracy of 25% of depth, identification of hazardous quick clay deposits, and sedimentary basin mapping. These case studies illustrate that although today’s AEM systems do not have the resolution required for late-phase, detailed engineering design, AEM is a valuable tool for early-phase site investigations. Intrusive, ground-based methods are slower and more expensive, but when they are used to complement the weaknesses of AEM data, site investigations can become more efficient. With new developments of drone-borne (UAV) systems and increasing investment in AEM surveys, we see the potential for continued global adoption of this technology.

2021 ◽  
Vol 10 (11) ◽  
pp. 766
Xishihui Du ◽  
Kefa Zhou ◽  
Yao Cui ◽  
Jinlin Wang ◽  
Shuguang Zhou

Machine learning (ML) as a powerful data-driven method is widely used for mineral prospectivity mapping. This study employs a hybrid of the genetic algorithm (GA) and support vector machine (SVM) model to map prospective areas for Au deposits in Karamay, northwest China. In the proposed method, GA is used as an adaptive optimization search method to optimize the SVM parameters that result in the best fitness. After obtaining evidence layers from geological and geochemical data, GA–SVM models trained using different training datasets were applied to discriminate between prospective and non-prospective areas for Au deposits, and to produce prospectivity maps for mineral exploration. The F1 score and spatial efficiency of classification were calculated to objectively evaluate the performance of each prospectivity model. The best model predicted 95.83% of the known Au deposits within prospective areas, occupying 35.68% of the study area. The results demonstrate the effectiveness of the GA–SVM model as a tool for mapping mineral prospectivity.

Minerals ◽  
2021 ◽  
Vol 11 (11) ◽  
pp. 1247
Eko Gerald Ejiga ◽  
Noer El Hidayah Ismail ◽  
Ismail Yusoff

Digital edge detector operations using magnetic derivatives in conjunction with spectra depth analysis were performed on high-resolution aeromagnetic signals to enhance the delineation and interpretation of depth, structural, and intrasedimentary features within the Middle Benue Trough (MBT) of North Central Nigeria, which could serve as a guide for mineral exploration. The derivatives revealed high-amplitude and short-wavelength anomalies over areas underlain by crystalline basement complexes, major volcanic zones, and aggregates of intrasedimentary volcanic and plutonic rocks. Geologic lineaments trending predominantly NE–SW and NW–SE, as well as minor trends of E–W and N–S, suggest that the area has undergone differential stress regimes across geologic time. The spectral depth analysis indicates a two-source depth model. The deep depth ranges from 1.9 to 6.1 km with an average of 3.9 km, whereas the shallow depth ranges between 0.3 and 1.9 km with an average of 0.8 km and is found to emanate from magnetic signals of post-Cretaceous near-surface igneous intrusions as well as other magnetized bodies embedded within the sediments. The spatial distribution of various hydrothermal minerals such as lead–zinc–barite deposits, as well as salt mineralization, is associated with the widespread Tertiary–recent magmatism and governed by pre-existing tectonic structures in the region.

2021 ◽  
Robert Jackisch ◽  
Björn Henning Heincke ◽  
Robert Zimmermann ◽  
Erik Vest Sørensen ◽  
Markku Pirttijärvi ◽  

Abstract. Mineral exploration in the West Greenland flood basalt province is attractive because of its resemblance to the magmatic sulphide-rich deposit in the Russian Norilsk region, but it is challenged by rugged topography and partly poor exposure for relevant geologic formations. On northern Disko Island, previous exploration efforts have identified rare native iron occurrences and a high potential for Ni-Cu-Co-PGE-Au mineralization. However, Quaternary landslide activity has obliterated rock exposure at many places at lower elevations. To augment prospecting field work under these challenging conditions, we acquire high-resolution magnetic and optical remote sensing data using drones in the Qullissat area. From the data, we generate a detailed 3D model of a mineralized basalt unit, belonging to the Asuk Member (Mb) of the Palaeocene Vaigat formation. A wide range of legacy data and newly acquired geo- and petrophysical, as well as geochemical-mineralogical measurements form the basis of an integrated geological interpretation of the unoccupied aerial system (UAS) surveys. In this context, magnetic data aims to define the location and the shape of the buried magmatic body, and to estimate if its magnetic properties are indicative for mineralization. High-resolution UAS-based multispectral orthomosaics are used to identify surficial iron staining, which serve as a proxy for outcropping sulphide mineralization. In addition, high-resolution UAS-based digital surface models are created for geomorphological characterisation of the landscape to accurately reveal landslide features. UAS-based magnetic data suggests that the targeted magmatic unit is characterized by a pattern of distinct positive and negative magnetic anomalies. We apply a 3D magnetization vector inversion model (MVI) on the UAS-based magnetic data to estimate the magnetic properties and shape of the magmatic body. By means of using constraints in the inversion, (1) optical UAS-based data and legacy drill cores are used to assign significant magnetic properties to areas that are associated with the mineralized Asuk Mb, and (2) the Earth’s magnetic and the paleomagnetic field directions are used to evaluate the general magnetization direction in the magmatic units. Our results indicate that the geometry of the mineralized target can be estimated as a horizontal sheet of constant thickness, and that the magnetization of the unit has a strong remanent component formed during a period of Earth’s magnetic field reversal. The magnetization values obtained in the MVI are in a similar range as the measured ones from a drillcore intersecting the targeted unit. Both the magnetics and topography confirm that parts of the target unit were displaced by landslides. We identified several fully detached and presumably rotated blocks in the obtained model. The model highlights magnetic anomalies that correspond to zones of mineralization and is used to identify outcrops for sampling. Our study demonstrates the potential and efficiency of using multi-sensor high-resolution UAS data to constrain the geometry of partially exposed geological units and assist exploration targeting in difficult, poorly exposed terrain.

2021 ◽  
Vol 8 (4) ◽  
pp. 249-272
Marinko Oluić ◽  
Sreten Romandić ◽  
Ratko Vasiljević

The main goal of the presented exploration was to estimate potential for mineralization in the Mawat ophiolitic massif in Kurdistan, Iraq. The aim of the study was to explore existing copper mineralization and assessor elements gold, platinoids and chromium. Geological exploration detected two types of Cu occurrence a) secondary Cu carbonates (malachite) and b) Cu sulfides (chalcopyrite-pyrite). The Mawat region is mostly built of ultrabasic and basic rocks: peridotites, gabbros, serpentinites and basalts which are heavily deformed, with faults mostly oriented NNW-SSE, and NE-SW. The first phase of exploration comprised digital processing of ASTER and QuickBird satellite images, with appropriate geometrical and radiometric corrections and transformation into coordinate system. Color composite images were produced in different scales. They served to define lithological composition, tectonic settings, location of the points of interest etc. The field work was designed to check satellite data in situ, with focus on perspective rock formations, which might host copper mineralization, and other elements. The host rocks of the ore occurrences are primarily gabbros and metagabbros intersected by diabase dykes, epidote and quartz veins. Secondary mineralization is the product of surficial weathering and it is represented by malachite and limonite. The geophysical survey was very useful in the detection of area with elevated induced polarization and low resistivity. Three perspective areas have been selected for detailed explorations: Waraz, Mirava-Chenara and Konjirin-Kuradawi. The concentration of copper varies highly in very wide ranges; the maximum measured concentration of Cu was determined in Waraz area 6.7%. Some rock samples also show concentration of gold from 0.36 to 2.59 ppm Au. Keywords: Mawat ophiolitic massif, geologic-geophysical explorations, copper mineralization, Kurdistan-Iraq

2021 ◽  
Vol 14 (11) ◽  
pp. 6711-6740
Ranee Joshi ◽  
Kavitha Madaiah ◽  
Mark Jessell ◽  
Mark Lindsay ◽  
Guillaume Pirot

Abstract. A huge amount of legacy drilling data is available in geological survey but cannot be used directly as they are compiled and recorded in an unstructured textual form and using different formats depending on the database structure, company, logging geologist, investigation method, investigated materials and/or drilling campaign. They are subjective and plagued by uncertainty as they are likely to have been conducted by tens to hundreds of geologists, all of whom would have their own personal biases. dh2loop (https://github.com/Loop3D/dh2loop, last access: 30 September 2021​​​​​​​) is an open-source Python library for extracting and standardizing geologic drill hole data and exporting them into readily importable interval tables (collar, survey, lithology). In this contribution, we extract, process and classify lithological logs from the Geological Survey of Western Australia (GSWA) Mineral Exploration Reports (WAMEX) database in the Yalgoo–Singleton greenstone belt (YSGB) region. The contribution also addresses the subjective nature and variability of the nomenclature of lithological descriptions within and across different drilling campaigns by using thesauri and fuzzy string matching. For this study case, 86 % of the extracted lithology data is successfully matched to lithologies in the thesauri. Since this process can be tedious, we attempted to test the string matching with the comments, which resulted in a matching rate of 16 % (7870 successfully matched records out of 47 823 records). The standardized lithological data are then classified into multi-level groupings that can be used to systematically upscale and downscale drill hole data inputs for multiscale 3D geological modelling. dh2loop formats legacy data bridging the gap between utilization and maximization of legacy drill hole data and drill hole analysis functionalities available in existing Python libraries (lasio, welly, striplog).

2021 ◽  
pp. 0952-099
CM Abraham ◽  
K Essien ◽  
EU Umoh ◽  
EC Umoh ◽  
LE Ehiremem ◽  

The study examined Sand Dredged Environment of Akwa Ibom State, Nigeria towards effective monitoring of sand mining mites and post-management techniques. Multi-stage random sampling was used to select nine (9) Local Government Areas and three (3) communities from the selected local Government Areas in Akwa Ibom State. Primary data were collected with structured questionnaires and focus group discussion. The study reveals that post-management guidelines of sand mining environment was not adopted in the study area to the failure in management of the environment in which a larger expanse of agricultural land have been converted to waste land and borrow pit. This work found that acquisition of sand mining permit was grossly ignored among sand miners in some mining communities, whereas other miners who obtained their permit deliberately hired too many dredgers in their allocated sand mining sites and the stakeholders mandated to monitor sand mining sites did not visit the sites and were relatively unaware of the illegal businesses going on in the sand mining sites. Chi-square was used to examine the impact of stakeholders on management of sand mining environment. The result indicated that a value of 204.565 at p<0.05 was obtained and it was concluded that stakeholders in the solid mineral exploration industry should re-direct their interest toward post-management of sand mining environment so as to restore degraded ecosystem for further land use purposes.

J.A. Kidder ◽  
K. Sullivan ◽  
M.I. Leybourne ◽  
A. Voinot ◽  
D. Layton-Matthews ◽  

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