SmartExploration

Novel modeling methods for probing deep targets using 2D, 3D and

thin-sheet modeling algorithms for ground-based and airborne time-

and frequency-domain EM data

The geological evolution of Europe has resulted in generation of a variety of mineral resources which are essential for the sustainable economic growth of the EU. There are, however, challenges for their exploration; the chase is steadily moving towards greater depths, particularly near the existing mines where continued supply needs to be secured and environmental impacts of mining minimized. Enhanced subsurface geological information, deposit concepts and exploration methods are required to realize the great unexplored potential at depth in major mining camps, but also the potential that new greenfield regions can offer due to the enhanced geological knowledge.

Smart Exploration, consisting of a research and application team supported by a group of technologically advanced SMEs and mining industries, will primarily focus on developing cost-effective, environmentally-friendly tools and methods for geophysical exploration in highly challenging brownfield areas to meet the ever increasing community (social acceptance) and environmental issues, as well as reduce the return time (from exploration to production).

The project starts from December 2017 and is due by December 2020. As one of the partner, Aarhus University will focus on developing effective electromagnetic modelling and imaging techniques, which can provide a full 3D view of the subsurface conductivity structures.


Fig. 1. Geographical representations of the partners (red circles) and exploration sites (mining symbols). Six exploration or validation sites in 5 countries, and 27 partners from 9 countries participate in the project. The greenfield exploration sites in Kosovo are coordinated by Proxis (registered in Poland).
Fig. 2. The overall structure of the Smart Exploration consortium illustrating how the partners complement each other, for different aspects of the project (new technologies – new data and targets – validation), to reach the three pillars of the call: Research-Innovation-Action.
Fig. 3. Six work packages are designed in the Smart Exploration to address and interconnect different tasks and objectives of the project and for making a significant impact towards new exploration technologies.
Fig. 4. Distribution of the total budget and staff efforts per partner (top row), based on the partner type (including the management) and staff efforts based on work package (bottom row).
Fig. 5. Investigation site at Neves-Corvo, Portugal. The colorscale shows the regional gravity map. Gravity data and the surface time domain EM data (large loop configuration) will be inverted.

SkyTEM system, UAV controlled-source EM, digital-based systems for slimhole seismic measurements.

The project will also include development of new geophysical instrument such as the ground-based frequency domain electromagnetic system

Swe­den (Uppsala University, Geological Sur­vey of Sweden, Nordic Iron Ore, Ludvika Kommun, GeoVista, MIC Nordic, BitSim, and Amkvo);
Finland (Yara, University of Helsinki and University of Turku);
Denmark (SkyTEM Surveys and Aarhus University);
Netherlands (Delft University of Technology, Seismic Mechatronics and EAGE);
Italy (Polytechnic University of Turin); Portugal (Somincor and National Laboratory of Energy and Geology);
Ger­many (Technical University Bergakademie Freiberg);
Poland (Institute of Geophysics, Polish Academy of Sciences, Geopartner and Proxis);
Greece (National Tech­nical University of Athens, Helas Gold, Seismotech and Delfi Distomon).