Identifying Mineral Exploration Targets in the TREK Project Area, Central British Columbia (Parts of NTS 093B, C, F, G), Using a Multimedia and Multivariate Analysis of Geochemical Data and a Preliminary Method of Sediment Transport Modelling
Project code: 2016-019
Project type: Minerals and Mining
Proponent: Noble Exploration Services Ltd.
Principal Investigator: D.A Sacco
Project location: Cariboo Chilcotin Region, British Columbia
Identify exploration targets, using multiple variables, to analyse new and existing till and lake sediment samples.
Till and lake sediment samples are considered to be good media for correlating potential mineral deposits. The correlation is due to improved understandings of glacial transport mechanisms and traditional understandings of the transport of lake sediments by watercourses. Exploration targets can be identified by analyzing samples to determine whether their geochemical signatures suggest the presence of common types of mineral deposits. By producing a comprehensive collection of geoscience data for this highly prospective region, this Targeting Resources through Exploration and Knowledge (TREK) project will provide a better understanding of this information and can be promoted as a mineral exploration tool.
The TREK project was designed to:
- Identify exploration targets within the TREK area
- Develop and test a method to delineate potential sources for till and lake sedimentation samples
- Create a database of till and lake sediment geochemical data for prospective elements of interest
Anomaly thresholds were determined for each element of interest, determined through a review of existing rock geochemistry provided by MINFILE. The data was then mapped to identify the locations of geological anomalies and to correlate anomalies between till and lake sediment samples. Those samples that were clustered between the two media were identified as high-priority exploration targets.
Areas of influence (AOI) -- which identify potential sources of sediment samples -- were delineated in order to evaluate the TREK geochemical dataset. The study showed preliminary methods to identify the AOI for till and lake sediment samples, which can be built upon and improved for further studies.
The project area was within the Interior Plateau, south of Vanderhoof and approximately 60 kilometres west of Quesnel. The total survey area was about 25,000 square kilometres, with access provided through a network of forestry roads in the Vanderhoof, Quesnel, Chilcotin and Central Cariboo forest districts. Geographical regions included parts of the Nechako Plateau, Fraser Plateau and Fraser Basin. Bedrock is obscured by surface deposits composed mostly of till and glacial lake sediments. Preliminary elements of interest were determined through a review of available rock geochemistry from those mineral deposit types and information in MINFILE. Mineral occurrences included gold, silver, molybdenum, copper, zinc, lead and asbestos.
How was data collected?
Till samples were collected in 2013 and 2014 as part of the TREK project. Among the till samples, 50 samples containing pebbles were compared to the bedrock source attributed to them. Geochemical concentrations within till samples were then compared with bedrock source regions to determine if they match.
Sediment samples were collected from a number of area lakes. The geochemical concentrations within samples from each lake were compared to the areas of interest. If the variation between key pathfinder elements -- those that are closely associated with a deposit model of interest -- was within 25%, the values were averaged and matched to the area of interest.
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