”We would advocate for geophysical modelling to be applied to all exploration projects, and at any stage, so significant is its capacity to reduce geological uncertainty within the mineral exploration process.Geoff PlastowGeophysicist, Seequent
- Invest your organisation’s exploration resources more effectively
- Find an easier way to reduce geological uncertainty within the mineral exploration process
- Explore large areas of land while still lowering costs
- Utilise geophysical data to aid better expenditure decisions
As a junior explorer, how many times have you had to make major expenditure decisions or committed your organisation’s resources while feeling you still don’t have all the geoscientific data you’d like?
There is always an element of gambling in exploration; it comes with the territory. But in truth, many explorers operate with insufficient geological information required for a confident exploration programme.
The reasons for this are not hard to see. Surficial geological mapping can be time-consuming – and the time may simply not be available – while drilling campaigns are notoriously expensive.
Yet knowing where and how to explore remains fundamental to any junior’s project if decisions are to be made well (and investors duly impressed).
So what’s the alternative? In comparison, we’d argue that geophysical surveying can be an effective, lower cost substitute. It enables juniors to cover large areas of land in a timely manner, mapping geological features and associated mineral systems, all the way from the surface to hundreds of metres below. It has the potential to highlight and augment your existing geoscience data and point you towards the most promising mineral areas.
In fact, we would advocate for geophysical modelling to be applied to all exploration projects, and at any stage, so significant is its capacity to reduce geological uncertainty within the mineral exploration process.
Where do we see the benefits?
Speed. Geophysical surveys and analysis can be completed in days to weeks, allowing your team to make time and cost-sensitive or seasonal exploration decisions.
Accuracy. Geophysical data can be used in geological targeting, resulting in a more informed drilling campaign, prioritised drilling, and a reduction in wasteful drill holes.
Time. Large areas can be explored significantly faster and at less cost compared to drilling or excavation.
Environment. Geophysical surveys are non-invasive and do not involve moving earth or drilling into the subsurface, so typically have less impact on the environment in and around the project area.
Lower cost, greater efficiency
Also, being able to plan, QC, model and integrate your geophysical and geoscience data in a single environment has significant cost and efficiency advantages. It’s one of the reasons we suggest the combination of Oasis montaj and VOXI Earth Modelling to create that environment. It’s a solution that helps juniors leverage advanced geophysical analysis and modelling to reduce exploration risk and accelerate exploration success.
It can support juniors to predict an area’s geophysical response prior to collecting data; quality control and integrate that data as it’s coming in; then use the power of cloud computing to analyse and deliver insights within minutes rather than days. Exploration hypotheses can therefore be tested rapidly, with your understanding of a project area enhanced as a result.
Geophysical modelling is hugely versatile and can map a clearer path for every exploration. For example, as one customer said of the Magnetisation Vector Inversion (MVI) feature built into Geosoft VOXI Earth Modelling “I felt like I had been taken from the Stone Age to the Space Age over a cup of coffee…”
We’ve looked at this and other geoscientific data gathering challenges in our eBook “Six Steps to Better Exploration for Juniors”, with suggestions on how you can use geophysical modelling to dynamically evolve your understanding of a site’s geology and release its fullest potential as a result.
You can access it for free here, and look out for more ideas and insight on junior mining exploration in future blogs on this site.