Geoscience BC Report 2015-15

Toward an Improved Basis for Beneath-Cover Mineral Exploration in the QUEST Area, Central British Columbia: New Structural Interpretation of Geophysical and Geological Datasets
- M. Sánchez, T. Bissig and P. Kowalczyk
(NTS 093A, B, G, H, J, K, N)

Report Components

This data release consists of three interpretive ArcGIS projects available in Map Package formats (*mpk) and ArcMap Document (*mxd) format. Map Package projects can be accessed by double-clicking the *.mpk files if ArcGIS is installed. Unpacked versions are also provided in the zipfiles, for non- ArcGIS users that would need a direct access to individual shapefiles (*.shp) files. An extensive suite of digital deliverables have been prepared for distribution. The deliverables include several format types: ArcGIS shape, Geosoft, and geotiff files. Please refer to the report and data summary spreadsheet for more information.

Report Description

Geoscience BC's QUEST survey area in central British Columbia has a large amount of regional geophysical and geochemical data available to the exploration industry; yet the bedrock geology remains poorly constrained, due to widespread glacial deposits masking the bedrock in the Prince George area. To help focus exploration efforts for blind Porphyry style deposits in this highly prospective area, the results of this project provide a fresh look at the structural architecture and the bedrock geology in the QUEST area.

The study focused on the interpretation of aeromagnetic and airborne gravity data using multiple geophysical datasets in the public domain. Datasets included Geoscience BC's Bouguer and isostatic residual (IR) gravity grids and Natural Resources Canada's (NRCan) regional reduced-to-pole (RTP) aeromagnetic data. Various band-pass filters and transformations were applied to the data, to generate representations of the magnetic field as slices at various depths. Known geological constraints from surface exposures, such as maximum thickness of Quaternary drift cover and of the Chilcotin Group volcanic rocks, were important for generating shallower depth slices.

Using the results of this processed data, a systematic and iterative comparison of aeromagnetic data against airborne gravity, topography and geological mapping was completed. Interpretation for the Quest area then focused on the identification and classification of three principle elements observed in the data: lineaments, anomaly axes and broader domains of similar magnetic intensity. Fault type and kinematic interpretation of the observed and interpreted elements led to the identification of a series of mostly NW striking magnetic domains. These regionally extensive features can be correlated to the known geological domains, from east to west: ancient North America, the Quesnel terrane and the Cache Creek terrane. The eastern and western boundary of the Central magnetic domain belt is interpreted as a series of thrusts or reverse fault systems. Known porphyry copper-gold and copper-molybdenum deposits: Mount Polley, Mount Milligan and Gibraltar are shown to lie within the Central magnetic domain. In the northern part of the study area, rocks of the Hogem Batholith appear to continue further south than previously mapped may be prospective for copper-gold porphyry mineralization, such as at the Lorraine prospect.

Suggested Reference

Sánchez, M.G., Bissig, T. and Kowalcyzk, P. (2015): Toward an improved basis for beneath-cover mineral exploration in the QUEST area, central British Columbia: new structural interpretation of geophysical and geological datasets (NTS 093A, B,G, H, J, K, N); Geoscience BC, Report 2015-15.

Additional Links

  • GBC Project 2009-024: Regional 3D Inversion Modeling of Airborne Gravity, Magnetic, and Electromagnetic Data, Central BC
  • GBC Project 2009-025 Regional 3D inversion modelling of airborne gravity and magnetic data: QUEST-South, BC, Canada
  • GBC Project 2008-009: QUEST Project: 3D Inversion Modelling, Integration, and Visualization of Airborne Gravity, Magnetic, and Electromagnetic Data

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