A general purpose computer program for data analysis in exploration

CIM Bulletin, Vol. 77, No. 870, 1984

W.R. GREEN and B.W. BARDE, Placer Development Limited, Vancouver, B.C.

Geological exploration involves the collection and analysis of a wide variety of information. A basic problem in interpretation is to determine the interrelationships of the different data. A number of statistical methods can be applied to this problem, provided that subsets of data can be selected. We have recently developed a set of interactive computer programs which provide the capability to quickly examine a large set of data, and may be used by people with little previous computer experience. There are two main stages in using this system. First is selection of subsets of data, by applying various tests on the values of given items. This includes matching specific entries in descriptive fields, and minimum - maximum tests on numeric fields. The second stage is basic statistical analysis and data display, including histograms, 2-D scatter plots, probability (cumulative frequency) plots, and correlation matrices. All output can be viewed on a computer terminal, and important parameters changed to produce the most effective display for use in interpretation. This system has been applied to a number of different exploration problems. An example was the determination of the nature and extent of mineralization of a gold prospect in the Queen Charlotte Islands, from drill-hole data. With the aid of the computer programs, a mineralized zone was defined, and locations for further exploration identified.
Keywords: Computer applications, Exploration geology, Data analysis, Computer programs, Statistical analysis