”If you can’t gather, manage and swiftly analyse the right data in the right way, you won’t be able to change course and prioritise the most important discoveries as they present themselves.David KerrHead of Product, Minalytix
- Field seasons are short. How do you make the most of them?
- What’s the key to boosting field team productivity?
- What are the fixes to having inexperienced geos on the ground?
- How do you shorten the “time-to-value” of your data?
In any field sampling program there is a wealth of data to collect, and, as a rule, not much time to do it. Somewhere within that mass of information are the pieces of the jigsaw that will reveal the valuable deposits critical to hitting your project’s targets.
But finding and fitting those pieces is never easy.
Field seasons are often brief, and timing is critical, so it’s essential to maximise the exploration time you do have. Field sampling programs typically have many boots on the ground, but often filled by junior geos without much experience. Consequently the “time-to-value” of your data can rise problematically as you waste effort cleaning, migrating and combining the logs that everybody has captured.
And that’s a challenge, because if you can’t gather, manage and swiftly analyse the right data in the right way, you won’t be able to change course and prioritise the most important discoveries as they present themselves. And isn’t that the essence of agile exploration?
The ability to analyse data as it comes in is therefore invaluable for junior mining exploration companies, so they can react before that short field window closes. Spend less time wrangling your data and more interpreting it, and your decision making will improve, along with your chances of success.
Streamlining the route to value for field sampling data
Field sampling is an element of the exploration universe Seequent has looked at closely, seeking ways to streamline its gathering and interrogation. As a result, our partnership offers the cloud-based sample and data management solution, MX Deposit. By integrating MX Deposit with geological modelling, resource estimation, and subsurface geoscience data solutions we have a tool that lets your crews in the field maximise their productivity.
In real world use, they can easily capture field samples on a tablet using the MX Deposit mobile app. GPS integration gives an accurate location for every sample. Meanwhile the tablet camera provides a way to quickly snap a picture.
All data is synchronised to the web and immediately accessible anywhere in the world by authorised users. This gives juniors the ability to access their data as soon as it is available, knowing everything has been logged and captured in a consistent manner.
(Junior exploration company Talisker Resources used this approach to seize the record of the largest land package staked in a single day in British Columbia history – 3,900 data points gathered by 23 professional and student geologists across the 192,716-hectare Spences Bridge Gold Project.)
What to know before you step into the field
But we also know there is more to successful exploration than having the right technology to hand (thought it’s very useful…)
Planning your data requirements meticulously and well in advance of putting your people in the field is one of the best tips we can give. Give careful thought to what you are hoping to do with your data as the program is progressing, not just when it’s done. This will determine not just what needs to be captured, but how it should be carried out.
- How should crews capture geological observations and/or structural measurements?
- When should they take a supporting photograph?
- How are they recording location data and what other meta-data should they capture?
- How will all of this data be captured in a consistent manner?
- Who should this information be shared with and when?
- And when all this data is finally gathered in, how will you access it and ensure it will always be available to the people who need it, when they need it?
How Seequent can help juniors raise their game in a competitive market
Of course there are many other components to a successful exploration – not to mention the challenge of gaining investment and impressing partners before your first geologist sets foot on the ground. Drill planning, quantification and generating actionable insight from geological models all have their place in the mix.
To support juniors in this task we’ve collected the thoughts of Seequent’s most experienced geological discovery experts to create our “Six Steps to Better Exploration for Juniors” eBook. Complete with a 20-question checklist that helps juniors test their thinking and preparation before they head into the field.