Crustal Geophysics and Geochemistry Science Center

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Geophysics for Assessments

Recently compiled and publically available continental-scale magnetic and, in some cases, gravity, much of the world, including North America, Australia, Antarctica, Russia, are now available. In addition, Western Mining Corp., Australia, is allowing access to their global magnetic and gravity databases that include Asia, Africa and South America. All of these data sets will provide a means of seeing through geologic as well as anthropogenic cover, such as vegetation, soil, desert sands, glacial till, man-made features, and water to reveal lithologic variations and structural features such as faults, folds, and dikes in the crystalline basement. In addition, the data sets can help constrain global plate reconstructions for a variety of supercontinents including the Neo-Proterozoic continent of Rodinia as well as earlier ones. The broad objective of this proposed major research effort is to use this unprecedented array of magnetic and gravity data sets to map cyrstalline basement of selected continents. This regional geologic mapping effort will constrain plate reconstructions and provide tools to evaluate ore genesis and settings of mineral deposits.

Project Objectives

The project will provide a means to gain expertise in the regional geology (particularly the Precambrian) in a variety of places. This kind of understanding provides the underpinnings for mineral resource assessments and allows us to place mineral resource information within a framework of global crustal evolution cycles as well as help us to understand continental growth processes. The distribution of gold and base metal resources within selected reconstructions will be evaluated in order to help the Mineral Resources Program achieve science goals pertaining to understanding mineral resources in a global context.

Relevance & Impact

The results from this research will include regional geologic maps of selected locations world wide as well as produce a series of products that will provide a very thorough presentation of the distribution of gold and base metal resources through space and time. These products will address major, and still quite controversial, plate reconstruction issues. These investigations, especially the paleogeographic reconstructions, will provide new insights into the important role of climate in formation of specific mineral deposits.

Project Chief:

Carol Finn Box 25046 Denver Federal Center MS 964
Denver, CO 80225
(303) 236-1345
cfinn@usgs.gov

Products

Presentations

  • Finn, Carol A. and Sergei Pisarevsky, 2003, Aeromagnetic data guide reconstructions of parts of Rodinia: Geological Society of America Abstracts with Programs, vol. 35, no. 6, September 2003, p. 342. View Finn GSA abstract.

Posters

  • Finn, C., Goldfarb, R., Anderson, E., Marsh, E., Gardoll, S., and Pisarevsky, S. 2003, Approaches to Continent-Scale Geophysics for Assessments: USGS.

Reports

  • Finn, C.A. and Sims, P.K., 2005, Signs from the Precambrian: The framework of the Rocky Mountain region derived from aeromagnetic data, in Karlstrom, K.E., and Keller, G.R., eds., The Rocky Mountain Region — An Evolving Lithosphere: Tectonics, Geochemistry, and Geophysics, Geophysical Monograph Series, vol. 152, AGU, pp. 39-54.
  • Finn, C. A., Anderson, E. D. and Goldfarb, R. J., 2003, Relation of regional aeromagnetic data to geology and ore deposits, Altai Shan and Jungaar basin region, NW China and eastern Kazakhstan, in Metallogeny of Cu-Au-Ni-Fe-Rare Metal Deposits and Related Geodynamic Evolution of the Altaid-Tianshan in Northwestern China, Mao, J., Goldfarb, R., Seltmann, R., Xiao, W., and Wang, D., eds., Excursion Guidebook of the IGCP-473 Field Conference in Urumqui and the Altaid-Tianshan of China: 9-21 August 2003, 20 ms pp.
  • Goldfarb R.J,. Mao, J., Hart, C., Wang, D., Anderson, E., Wang, Z., 2003,Tectonic and metallogenic evolution of the Altay Shan, Northern Xinjiang Uygur Autonomous Region, Northwestern China, in Metallogeny of Cu-Au-Ni-Fe-Rare Metal Deposits and Related Geodynamic Evolution of the Altaid-Tianshan in Northwestern China, Mao, J., Goldfarb, R., Seltmann, R., Xiao, W., and Wang, D., eds., International Association on the Genesis of Ore Deposits and CERCAMS, London, 20 ms pp.
  • Mao, J., Goldfarb, R., Seltmann, R., Xiao, W., Wang, D., and Hart, C. (eds.), 2003, Tectonic Evolution and Metallogeny of the Chinese Altay and Tianshan: International Association on the Genesis of Ore Deposits and CERCAMS, London.

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