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Earth Explorer is an online source of news, expertise and applied knowledge for resource explorers and earth scientists. Sponsored by Geosoft.

News & Views

News Archive

December 7, 2016

Geosoft introduces IP and resistivity inversion in VOXI Earth Modelling

Geosoft has added induced polarization and resistivity data inversion to its VOXI Earth Modelling 3D inversion software service. Geoscientists are now able to create detailed 3D models of conductivity and chargeability from IP and resistivity survey data with VOXI. The resulting models can assist in interpreting and targeting regions for mineral and environmental applications...

December 5, 2016

Mexico's Deepwater Round Exceeds Expectations

Some of the world's biggest oil companies showed up Dec. 5 and agreed to invest on the Mexican side of the Gulf of Mexico, proving that deepwater exploration still has a pulse despite challenging market conditions...

November 30, 2016

Magnetic inversion results for Ngamiland available for download

A regional-scale geophysical inversion of magnetic field data in the Ngamiland region of northwestern Botswana is now available for download from the Botswana Geoscience Portal, a partnership initiative of the Botswana Geoscience Institute, industry sponsors and Geosoft...

November 30, 2016

LIGO Resumes Search for Gravitational Waves

After a series of upgrades, the twin detectors of LIGO, the Laser Interferometer Gravitational-wave Observatory, have turned back on and resumed their search for ripples in the fabric of space and time known as gravitational waves. LIGO transitioned from their engineering test runs to full science observations at 8 a.m. Pacific Standard Time on November 30...

November 9, 2016

International Volcano Scientists Unite

For the first time, the United States will host the international Volcano Observatory Best Practices workshop, previously held only in Italy. The workshop will take place this month in Vancouver, Washington. It is designed specifically for volcano observatories around the world and their staff to exchange ideas and best practices with each other...

October 4, 2016

USGS Assesses Mineral Potential for Sagebrush Habitats in Six Western States

USGS has completed a comprehensive assessment and inventory of potential mineral resources covering approximately 10 million acres of Federal and adjacent lands in Idaho, Montana, Nevada, Oregon, Utah and Wyoming...

October 3, 2016

Uganda Targets Up to U.S.$100 Million for Mineral Exploration

Uganda is well endowed with mineral resources and, like many naturally-gifted African countries, is becoming keen on ensuring that these resources play a transformative role in its long-term structural transformation dream - the Vision 2040...

September 9, 2016

Small-Scale Fishers Get A Big Boost With First-Of-Its Kind Impact Investment Fund

Conservation organization Rare announces the Meloy Fund for Small-Scale Fisheries at Our Ocean Conference. The Global Environment Facility, one of the largest funders of conservation worldwide, will be investing $6 million into the fund...

September 1, 2016

Scientists take to the skies to track West African pollution

Scientists operating research aircraft over West Africa have detected organic materials in the atmosphere over a number of urban areas, contributing to concerns of the rise in pollution across the region...

August 17, 2016

New IGS Xplore prospectivity maps for Botswana

International Geoscience Services have released a series of base metal prospectivity maps for the Ngamiland District of northwestern Botswana using free geodata available on the recently-launched Botswana Geoscience Portal, hosted by Geosoft. The maps identify favorable areas for copper, zinc and lead mineralization using geological, geochemical and geophysical datasets downloaded directly from the portal.

August 11, 2016

NexGen Makes New High Grade Discovery

NexGen Energy reported the discovery of a new high grade zone of mineralization 4.7 km northeast of the Arrow Deposit as part of an on-going summer drilling program on its 100% owned, Rook I property, Athabasca Basin, Saskatchewan...

August 10, 2016

Rampion UXO Disposal to Take Place This Week

E.ON has confirmed that the two unexploded devices, detected along the Rampion offshore cable route will be safely disposed this week following the consultation with the Marine Management Organisation...

August 9, 2016

Diamonds In The Rough: E&Ps Find New Reserves In Mature Basins

The oil industry’s history demonstrates clearly that new plays and prospects have long been found in mature basins that were thought to be well on the way to being squeezed dry. Through the acquisition of new data, developing new concepts and coming up with fresh interpretations, long-producing basins around the world from the North Sea to Malaysia have continued to reveal new riches...

August 8, 2016

Northern Shield Identifies High Quality VTEM Targets at Séquoi

Northern Shield Resources announced the results of the interpretation and modelling of the VTEM survey from the Séquoi Property in the Labrador Trough of Quebec . Séquoi is owned 100% by Northern Shield and is being explored for Noril'sk style Ni-Cu-PGE massive sulphides. After geophysical modelling and interpretation of the VTEM data from Séquoi, six VTEM anomalies of significant interest have been identified...

August 3, 2016

Rio Tinto tailors big data drive to copper

Rio Tinto will put the weight of an exploration big data push and its newly-formed Growth and Innovation group behind its desire to identify a "tier 1" copper asset. Speaking at the annual Diggers & Dealers conference in Kalgoorlie, Growth and Innovation group executive Stephen McIntosh said Australia was "overdue for a tier 1" mineral discovery of any type...

August 1, 2016

Tetra Tech Awarded $200 Million Navy CLEAN Contract

Tetra Tech announced that it has been awarded a $200 million, single-award contract by Naval Facilities Engineering Command (NAVFAC) Atlantic. Through the Comprehensive Long-term Environmental Action Navy (CLEAN) contract, Tetra Tech will provide environmental engineering support services to installations within the NAVFAC Atlantic Area of Responsibility...

May 3, 2016

NATO Science for Peace and Security (SPS), MODUM Partners announce "Young Scientist Summer School on Sea Dumped Chemical Weapons"

This international project cooperates closely with CHEMSEA (Search and Assessment of Chemical Weapons) Project for and sharing and knowledge transfer...

April 12, 2016

Monday mad rush for gold stocks

Renewed optimism about the outlook for gold saw investors pile back into gold stocks, pushing many stock to 52-week highs in heavy volumes...

April 11, 2016

Medgold Resources: Continues to Expand the Boticas Gold Project, Portugal; Proposes $200,000 Private Placement

Medgold Resources is pleased to announce new assay results from contiguous rock-chip sampling from the Limarinho South zone at its Boticas gold project in Portugal, which include a highlight of 6.0m @ 5.7 g/t Au...

April 8, 2016

De-carbonizing our energy sector

Nuclear energy currently provides around 11 percent of the world's electricity. China, the European Union, the United States, India, Russia, South Korea, and other nations’ have major existing fleets...

April 1, 2016

Follow-Up Drilling Results Indicate Wide Gold Zones at Hendricks Gold Discovery

Gascoyne Resources Limited announced that it has received the final assay results from the 10,000 metre aircore exploration drilling programme...

March 26, 2016

The Oil Market Is Finally Hitting Its Breaking Point

After a significant reduction in investments over the past two years, oil companies can no longer overcome the production declines from legacy wells...

March 15, 2016

N-Sea Expands into the French Offshore Wind Industry

Subsea IMR provider, N-Sea, has signed a letter of intent with CERES Recherches & Expertise Sous-Marine and TechSub Industrie Environement, to provide subsea survey, installation and remediation services to the French offshore wind industry...

March 9, 2016

PDAC 2016 Convention Exceeds 22,000 Attendees

Optimism and opportunity abounded at the PDAC 2016 Convention of The Prospectors & Developers Association of Canada in spite of recent industry challenges...

March 3, 2016

6 Alpha Launches EOD Contracting Division

6 Alpha Associates, a specialist risk consultancy practice, with expertise in the assessment and management of unexploded ordnance, has launched a dedicated explosive ordnance disposal division...

Explorer Q&A.

Geologist Ryan Weston on Exploring in Peru

Ryan Weston, geologist. Ryan graduated with a B.Sc from the University of Toronto in 1999 and an M.Sc. from Laurentian University 2002. He has worked as a geologist for Canadian juniors and majors in Canada, Australia and Mexico. He is currently exploration manager for Strait Gold Corporation in Peru.

Q. How did you end up in Peru?
A. The opportunity arose for me to lead the exploration program for a Canadian junior working down in Peru and I took it.

Q. How do you rate the exploration potential of Peru and why?
A. Peru is an excellent place to explore due to both its natural resource potential and it’s mining history. Several world-class discoveries have been made there, yet potential for future discoveries still exists.

Q. What are the main benefits of working in Peru?
A. The main benefit is Peru’s prospective geology. Located in the Andean Cordillera, the country has great potential for the discovery of large economic deposits (eg. Cu porphyry, Au-Ag epithermal and base + precious metal skarn deposits). Peru also has an excellent government geologic survey (INGEMET) which produces quality regional geology maps and reports. The availability of digital topography maps as well as mining/exploration services and products makes exploration much easier than in some countries where very few services exist for the mining/exploration community.

Q. What are some of the challenges?
A. Community relations is an important part of any exploration program, but in Peru, companies must be especially aware of and in tune with the local perception of foreign mining companies. Recent confrontations between local communities and big mining companies illustrate the importance of establishing honest and open relations with local communities early on in any exploration program. No matter how large or rich a deposit may be, if the community is not onside, development of the deposit becomes a matter outside of economics.

Q. What’s the worst thing that has happened to you since you arrived? The best thing?
A. Worst things: getting sick while working at 4000m elevation and sleeping in an unheated tent 2 hours from the nearest small town. Best thing: getting to know the locals to the point where they become your friends.

Q. Describe a typical day.
A. Rise at 7am, eat and get ready for the day’s work. Leave camp by 8am on horse-back and travel to the beginning of my traverse for the day. Map up and down the mountain side, between 3800-4600m elevation on 20-45 degree slopes. Return to camp by 5:30pm, clean-up, organize samples, data entry, rest, eat dinner. Bed time is 8pm.

Q. Have you been become ill as a result of local conditions and what do you do to prevent illness?
A. I have been sick both from the local food and over-exertion. The key to staying healthy at high altitude is acclimatization and sufficient rest each night. The key to staying healthy with your diet is to avoid eating the local (unpasturized) cheese! It’s also important to drink plenty of fluids and eat sufficient carbohydrates to keep you warm at night.

Q. Are there any special safety precautions that you take?
A. I always map with a helper who is familiar with the local terrain. I never try to negotiate steep rock/cliff faces when there are safer alternative routes, even if they take more time. I always wear eye protection when hammering rocks, and most importantly, carry sufficient sun protection (i.e. hat, sunglasses, sunscreen).

Q. What particular technical, sociological, and/or logistical knowledge have you gained that may be applicable to exploration in other parts of the world?
A. Elevation is a very important piece of information while mapping in these terrains (not nearly as important in non-mountainous regions of the world). It is extremely important to maintain good relations with the local communities where you’re working, as you can spend much more time trying to remediate a situation which could have been easily avoided with a bit of care in the first place. And, in the absence of roads, carrying equipment to a camp with donkeys, horses and men is far slower and limits what you can bring in!!

Q. What is the local language and how do you communicate? Is language training part of your job?
A. Spanish and Quechuan (native Andean language) are the languages spoken on site. I learned enough Spanish while working in Mexico last year to get by, however I find Peruvian Spanish very different and harder to understand. Language training has not been a part of this job, but was with my past employer.

Q.What kind of living and office arrangements do you have?
A. We live in 2 insulated Weatherhaven tents. The second tent is equipped with electric capacity (including a space heater and fluorescent lights), and has an office section for working at night.

Q. How much vacation time do you get and how do you spend it?
A. Almost all my time in the field is work related. In general, my vacation time occurs while at home. Though there have been opportunities in the past for my wife and I to rendezvous in areas where I’ve been working (eg. Mexico, Newfoundland) and take advantage of the location.

Q. Describe your favourite local dish and/or beverage.
A. Fresh grilled fish (on the coast) and potatoes (Peru has the best potatoes!), washed down with a nice glass of South American white wine.

Q. Are there parts of the world you would not consider working in? If so, where and why?
A. There are several parts of Africa (e.g. DRC, Ethiopia) that have terrible stories attached to them (geologists being kidnapped and/or killed).

Q. What advice would you give geoscientists new to the country?
A. Make the effort to network with locals and ex-pats working in the industry. They are generally very friendly and eager to pass on any wisdom they’ve gained. Working in Peru can be frustrating at times but a little helpful advice can go along way!