The people, science and technology behind discovery

Subscribe to the Magazine

Get new articles sent directly to
your mailbox.


Join the network

Twitter Updates Group Forum

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

Upcoming Events

Marelec 2017

JUNE 27 - 30, 2017

Exploration '17

OCTOBER 22 - 25, 2017

News & Views

All News


New IGS Xplore prospectivity maps for Botswana

by Kylie Williams on August 17, 2016 news

Prospectivity Map of Besshi Copper Deposits in North West Botswana, courtesy of IGS.

The IGS Xplore Prospectivity Map of Besshi Copper Deposits in North West Botswana.View this map.

Prospectivity Map for Carbonate-hosted Pb-Zn ±Cu deposits (Irish-type Sedex, Mississippi Valley-type and/or Kipushi type) in North West Botswana, courtesy of IGS

The IGS Xplore Prospectivity Map for Carbonate-hosted Pb-Zn ±Cu deposits (Irish-type Sedex, Mississippi Valley-type and/or Kipushi type) in North West Botswana.View this map.

International Geoscience Services (IGS) 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.

IGS, a spin-out of the British Geological Survey, used their proprietary IGS Xplore software to identify favorable areas for copper, zinc and lead mineralization using geological, geochemical and geophysical datasets downloaded directly from the portal.

“What’s key about these mineral prospectivity maps,” explains Dr Aoife Brady, Geodata Product Manager for IGS, “is that they give industry and government an indication of the mineral potential of a particular region or country. They show mineralization across a range of commodities, assist with prioritizing future mapping programs or data gathering, and can assist with delineating mineral tenements or cadastre licence areas.”

IGS recognises the vital strategic and investment link between geodata and mineral exploration, particularly for emerging and developing countries. The new prospectivity maps connect and interpret the datasets available on the Portal to bring out the potential and add value.

“The data we downloaded from the Botswana Geoscience Portal was extremely clean, well presented and easily downloadable and readable,” says Brady, “Our system is designed to work with basic geochemical, geological, and structural data, as long as it’s in good condition, is correctly georeferenced, consistent and well-attributed vectorized data. The data on the portal was all in this format.”

Fundamentally different to other geological software, IGS Xplore is a non-GIS semantically-driven knowledge-based mineral prospectivity software system. It uses robust, peer-reviewed geological knowledge to infer and visualise potentially prospective regions, quickly and cost-effectively identifying early-stage exploration targets for a range of commodities in a variety of regional geological environments.

“In essence, we’ve tried to mimic how a geologist thinks by imputing geological rules for up to 50 mineralization models into a computerized system,” says Brady, “We then test the geodata for a particular region against it.”

The IGS Xplore Prospectivity Maps are free to download from the Botswana Geoscience Portal. Each download includes a map in both geotiff and shape / layer formats and a mineral prospectivity report which provides details of the analyses and the prospectivity results.