Wspólnotowy Serwis Informacyjny Badan i Rozwoju - CORDIS

Controlled source electromagnetic mapping for mineral exploration

The principal objectives of the controlled source electromagnetic mapping (CSEMM) project were:
- To develop CSEMM as a geophysical method with a depth penetration of 50m to 1000m, to compare it with other geophysical techniques currently used in mineral exploration, and to define its technical limits;

- To evaluate the performance of CSEMM as a sub-surface geophysical mapping tool in the exploration and discovery of ore deposits by developing metallogenic models through the integration of geology, geochemistry and the CSEMM results on geographical information systems (GIS).

A prototype CSEMM system was designed and constructed and tested in the Aguas Teñidas area in the Iberian pyrite belt, which was chosen because of the presence of a well defined deep concealed ore deposit that remained undeveloped. Data from a variety of geophysical techniques that had been used in the area, as well as from earlier drill holes, was compiled and digitised as part of the project. This data and compilation were available as a control for the initial calibration survey carried out in early 1996. A more extensive test survey was carried out successfully to the west of the calibration area in late 1996.

The CSEMM surveys in the Aguas Teñidas area were very successful and the results suggest the technique could be widely applicable for drill target definition of deep deposits, even where near-surface conductors mask deeper structures such as the in pyrite belt. CSEMM could be a cost-effective exploration/appraisal tool in areas adjacent to known deep (200-1000m) massive sulphide deposits. It would be applied most successfully after evaluation of geology of the target mineralisation in the survey area and the effects of any cultural noise that might be expected, as well as careful selection of the transmitter site.

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