Project: Defining the Surficial Geochemical Footprint of Buried Cu-Mo Porphyry Mineralization at the Highland Valley Copper Deposits
Rachel’s Masters project is part of the CMIC-NSERC ‘Footprints’ study’s Porphyry Cu Subproject which aims to identify and quantify the footprint of porphyry Cu(Mo) mineralization at Teck’s majority-owned Highland Valley Copper (HVC) operations in south-central British Columbia. Through a multi-disciplinary, collaborative and integrated approach, research aims to integrate various lithological, geophysical and surficial datasets to form a multi-dimensional model of the regional mineralization and alteration footprint. The deposits at HVC provide an ideal location to test new techniques and refine exploration methods to determine the spatial limit of ore-producing fluids in the bedrock and through overlying cover. Several known centres of porphyry Cu(Mo) mineralization remain buried and undeveloped at HVC.
The two targets to be studied by the project are known as Highmont South and J.A. Bedrock mineralization at Highmont South sits under 2-10m of glacial cover. Surficial geochemical studies at this target will fully characterize mineralogical and chemical changes manifested in the surficial environment after glacial dispersal and soil development over mineralized bedrock. The evaluation of various exploration methods, including novel techniques, aims to develop future framework for surficial geochemical exploration of buried copper porphyry deposits in glaciated and till-covered terrains. These methods will be tested on the J.A. target, where bedrock mineralization is concealed by 150-350m of pre-glacial and glacial cover.