Introduction
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Mineral Occurrences
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Introduction

Generating good new mineral exploration targets is a difficult task, requiring the consideration of many variables.

This website presents exploration targets, many of them new, which have been derived from the extensive geochemical sampling programs conducted in the Yukon by the Geological Survey of Canada .

A special feature of these targets is that each one has been evaluated using the MineMatch system, which compares them with their best-matching mineral deposit models, and provides guidance, available on the site, as to what information should be sought when conducting follow-up work on each target.

This study was funded by the Yukon Geological Survey as part of its ongoing commitment to assisting with the discovery of new mineral deposits in the territory. The study was undertaken by GeoReference Online Ltd.

Targets

Target maps for 80 different deposit-types are published on this site, each showing from 20 to 250 locations in which there is evidence for the existence of a mineral deposit.

Clicking on any target produces links to three reports on the target:

  • A ranking of the target against approximately 100 different deposit-types
  •  A comparison of the target with the deposit-type it matches best
  • A comparison of the target with the deposit-type it matches second-best.

These reports, which include lists of additional information which should be sought at the target location to improve the value of the target, greatly assist the prospector or geologist in deciding whether the target if of interest or not.

Reports are colour-coded to facilitate quick recognition of important attributes of the target, as shown on the right. They include hyperlinks to the scientific documents from which the deposit-type descriptions were derived.

 
Anomaly Clusters

A total of 1939 exploration targets have been identified in this study, from an input set of 31,104 silt samples.

The term "Anomaly Cluster" has been used for these targets, as each target may consist of more than one sample, so long as all samples characterising the target fall within 2.5 kilometres of each other. Single sample targets have been reported only if they are anomalous in at least two elements.

In addition to the target maps described above, an "Anomaly Clusters" map has been published, which shows all 1939 targets together on the same map, independent of deposit-type affinities. This map will be most useful to explorers who are interested in, or already have specialist knowledge of, particular parts of the Yukon.

 
Geology

Local geology is a crucial part of the characterisation of any exploration target.

Use was made of the territorially-consistent, 1:250 000 scale-based, geological map of the Yukon to segment the geochemical samples before thresholding, and to characterise the geology of sample sites and their surrounds.

To enable optimal cross-referencing to the rock-type terminology used in the MineMatch mineral deposit models, the Yukon geological legend was translated to match the terminology of the British Geological Survey, against which MineMatch is standardised.  This is discussed in detail on the Geology page of this site.

 
Geochemistry

The 31,104 samples contributing to this study have been analysed for 15 to 39 elements, depending on when they were collected. Up to 51 measurements are available per sample, when different analytical techniques for the same element have been used.

All these data have been analysed statistically, as a function of the lithology over which the sample was collected, and all statistical graphics have been published on this site.

The 99th percentile was used as the threshold above which any analysis was considered "enhanced" or "anomalous", and therefore indicative of a potential exploration target.

Samples above the threshold in more than one element, or multiple samples within 2.5km of each other that are anomalous in single elements, were identified as Anomaly Clusters.

As evident in the report extract on the right (click to enlarge), this website provides comprehensive reports of the geochemistry of all samples in each Anomaly Cluster, with anomalous values colour-coded according to the threshold they exceed, together with listings of all thresholds, and sample population sizes.

A powerful search facility is available for locating Anomaly Clusters by their composition, or number of anomalous elements. This offers an important alternative to searching out targets by their location on the map, or by their deposit-type affinity.

All these geochemical aspects to this study are discussed in detail on the Geochemisty page of this website.

 
Terranes

The Yukon extends across a number of different geological terranes, each of which is associated with its own unique genetic setting.

These different geological settings have been included in the characterisation of each target, and assist MineMatch to more accurately rank targets according to their mineral deposit-type affinities. (Click the terranes image on the right to enlarge it.)

The incorporation of terrane information into the MineMatch descriptions of anomalies is discussed in detail on the Terranes page of this site.

 
Structure

High quality maps of faulting and folding in the Yukon are available, and faults and folds are known to play an important role in the location of certain deposit-types.

Consequently, if any faulting or folding was found to occur within 2.5 kilometres of any sample in an Anomaly Cluster, that structure was included in the MineMatch description of the Anomaly Cluster, enabling potentially more accurate characterisation of deposit-type affinities. (Click the structures image above to enlarge it.)

The incorporation of structural information into the MineMatch descriptions of anomalies is discussed in detail on the Structure page of this site.

 
Mineral Occurrences

The Yukon Geological Survey has compiled a comprehensive database of mineral occurrences in the territory. If any of these occurrences occur near geochemical targets, their descriptions can provide the explorer with information very important to the target assessment.

All the MineMatch descriptions of targets identified in this project include references to all mineral occurrences falling within 2.5 kilometres of the Anomaly Cluster sample positions. All these references are hyperlinked to the online YGS Mineral Occurrences Database - greatly improving the speed with which targets close to known mineral occurrences may be evaluated.  (Click the mineral occurrence description image to enlarge it.)

                                                                Contact geology@gov.yk.ca with questions or comments about this web site.
                                                                                                                  Copyright 2004 Georeference Online Ltd
                                                                                                                                              Last modified: 11/10/04