Importance of Government-Sponsored High-Resolution Gravimetric, Magnetic, and Electromagnetic Surveys for Exploration and Geological Investigations, Abitibi Subprovince, Canada

Exploration & Mining Geology, Vol. 20, 2012

P. Keating (†) et al

New, high-resolution geophysical surveys were undertaken over parts of the Abitibi Subprovince, Canada, to help with geological mapping and to promote mineral exploration. Gravity surveys in the Rouyn-Noranda and Matagami areas (Québec) allowed better 3-D mapping of important geological structures, and a multiscale edge analysis of ground gravity data over the Blake River Group confirms that major faults behave at depth as predicted by surface geology. Airborne gravimetry west of Matagami (Québec) helped to identify a new trend south of Lake Grasset that is almost perpendicular to the assumed geological trend of the area. Electromagnetic (EM) surveys, flown in the Chibougamau (Québec) and Bartlett Dome (Ontario) areas, allowed new conductors to be identified at greater depths than were achievable with previously used EM systems. Airborne magnetic surveys were flown in the Burntbush area (Ontario), and other available high-resolution magnetic data were compiled to produce a continuous and homogenous magnetic grid of the Abitibi region. The resulting compilation map clearly shows the locations of dikes, faults, and shears zones, and reveals some fault extensions in areas of extensive overburden. This grid also allows the computation of enhanced maps, such as vertical derivative and tilt maps (e.g., a tilt map shows subtle magnetic features in the Blake River Group that are difficult to see in the total magnetic field or its first derivative). Results from these new surveys show there is considerable value in (1) resurveying areas covered by older surveys, and (2) recompiling data sets from these older surveys.
Keywords: Abitibi Subprovince, Blake River Group, Gravity worms, MEGATEM, 3-D mapping, Tilt map