A PROVINCIALLY-FINANCED non-profit group is spending $2.4 million to better identify mineral deposits between Terrace and Smithers.
Using a helicopter equipped with magnetic survey equipment, Geoscience B.C. will then make its information freely and equally available to exploration companies.
The project will also conduct geochemical studies and pull together existing data with the expectation of stimulating claim-staking and other exploration work.
Details will be unveiled tonight at a session being held at the Quantum hangar at the Northwest Regional Airport in Terrace.
The helicopter is being supplied from Precision GeoSurveys of Vancouver and will be kept at the Quantum hangar and flown by a Quantum pilot.
Geoscience BC will also hold information sessions with local communities as the project progresses.
In total, the airborne portion of the project will cover 6,700 square kilometres of the northwest.
Some information is already known about mineral deposits in the survey but this project is to fill in any gaps.
“This high-resolution airborne magnetic survey will provide the public with much more detailed information about the area’s mineral potential compared to the data that are currently available,” said Geoscience BC board member Robert Quartermain who is also the chair and CEO of Pretium Resources which is working to develop the gold-bearing Brucejack project north of Terrace.
Quartermain is one of 14 volunteer directors of Geoscience’s board.
Founded in 2005, Geoscience BC has received more than $50 million from the provincial government to spend on projects throughout B.C.
This particular project builds on work done in the area in 2008 with the assistance of the Bulkley-Nechako regional district and the Northern Development Initiative Trust.
That work, also airborne, involved flying defined routes of between two and four kilometres apart.
This time the spacing will be 250 metres, providing much more detailed information.