LITHOPROBE — geoscience probing of inner space leads to new developments for mining exploration

CIM Bulletin, Vol. 87, No. 977, 1994

R.M. Clowes, LITHOPROBE, and Professor, Geophysics and Astronomy, The University of British Columbia, Vancouver, British Columbia

As part of LITHOPROBE's multidisdplinary earth science research program to understand the evolution of the North American continent, studies have been undertaken in a number of key areas in Canada. In the Trans-Hudson Orogen of Manitoba and Saskatchewan, LITHOPROBE results require re-evaluation of tectonic models related to its origin. In the Abitibi greenstone belt of Quebec and Ontario, results indicate a more complex evolution for the southern Superior province, one that links with the development of gold and massive sulphide deposits. As part of the program, the seismic reflection profiling method is being adapted for the mining industry. Three examples demonstrate the subsurface information that can be obtained. In Noranda, the base of the volcanic Blake River group is imaged and reflectivity is tied to geology through well logs; in Matagami, the zone of mineralization is shown to be downdropped along a major fault; in Sudbury, a new structural model is developed, one that shows marked asymmetry at depth and indicates that some ore-bearing units on the margins of the igneous complex may be repeated at depth.
Mots Clés: Exploration, LITHOPROBE, Seismic reflection techniques.