Old Gold Generates New Opportunities to Find BC Copper Deposits

Vancouver, BC - October 10, 2019 - A new Geoscience BC project is building a comprehensive, open source database about mineral inclusions in gold grains collected from streams and mineral deposits around British Columbia to help identify new natural resource opportunities.

The Characterization of Gold Compositions in British Columbia project addresses the challenge of tracing gold grains panned from a stream back to their bedrock source.

Dr. Robert Chapman, project lead and University of Leeds senior lecturer in mineral exploration said: “Thousands of gold particles collected from streams and mines throughout British Columbia are stored at the University of British Columbia (UBC) and the University of Leeds in the UK. We are collating and digitizing this historic data while performing new analyses on some samples to create a valuable, new, one-of-a-kind, open source database.”

The database will be accompanied by a step-by-step user manual to apply machine learning techniques to the data without the need for expert guidance. This will allow additional samples to be assessed against the database to guide future mineral exploration.

Geoscience BC Vice President, Minerals, Christa Pellett, said: “This project fits Geoscience BC’s goals to develop innovative new geoscience techniques and to add value to existing geoscience data. Anyone who is interested in copper and gold deposits in British Columbia will have access to this database, and it will help them identify the deposit type that gold sample may have originated from.”

Some gold grains will be analyzed as part of the project using tools such as an electron microprobe, a scanning electron microscope and laser-ablation mass spectrometer techniques. The results of these analyses will be included in the database, along with existing analytical data collected from previous studies. Using traditional data interrogation techniques and machine learning, users will be able to better identify the deposit type which hosted the gold and therefore better target their exploration efforts.

Accessing Information

View the Geoscience BC project page and Earth Science Viewer for more information.

View project 2018-013 page                              View project 2018-013 in Earth Science Viewer

About Geoscience BC

Geoscience BC generates independent, public geoscience research and data about British Columbia’s minerals, energy and water resources. This advances knowledge, informs responsible development, encourages investment and stimulates innovation.

Our collaboration with the resource sectors, academia, communities, Indigenous groups and government develops and shares unbiased and credible earth science research and data.

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For more information, please contact:

Richard Truman
Geoscience BC
604-662-4147 / 778-929-1662 / truman@geosciencebc.com