The country generates and publishes detailed geoscientific information, at different scales, to complement mining exploration. An example of this is the National Plan of Geology (PNG), which involves characterizing the Earth’s crust by defining its structure, composition and age, chemical element concentrations at the surface, and hydrogeological, geothermal, and mineral resources in the subsurface. This information is of considerable importance and is a thorough requisite for mining explorers, enhancing mining exploration of new ore deposits and increasing competitiveness.
The geoscientific programs are:
Figure 3: Geological map 1:100,000 scale, of the Sierra Vaquillas Altas Sheet, located in the Domeyko Cordillera of the Antofagasta Region. This area forms part of the Eocene Metallogenic Belt, in which is located the super-sized Porphyry Cu-Mo ore deposits of Escondida and Chuquicamata, amongst others.
Figure 4: Airborne magnetic survey geophysical map of the Carrizalillo-El Tofo Area, Atacama and Coquimbo Regions. Note the contrast of intensity of the magnetic field between the coast and the interior where some of the IOGC type ore deposits are emplaced in the granitoids of the Early Cretaceous.
Figure 5: Geochemical map, 1:250,000 scale, generated in the Geochemistry Program. This particular map is the Pisagua Sheet, Arica-Parinacota and Tarapacá Regions. It shows the concentration of arsenic, interpolated by statistics from chemical analyses of approximately 600 fluvial sediment samples taken at the surface. With the database produced in the program, 58 similar interpolated concentration maps can be generated for different chemical elements for the same region.
Figure 5a: The interpolated concentration map of copper from the compilation of three 1:250,000 scale geochemical sheets(Arica Sheet, Pisagua Sheet, and Iquique Sheet).
Through the Sernageomin website, users can access the catalog of products available, and they can select the maps for areas of interest at different scales (Figures 3, 4, 5). Also, they can obtain detailed information of each map (text and GIS database) according to the region or zone of interest (Figures 4, 5, 6).
Figure 6: Map of Chile indicating the available cartography of basic geology at different scales published by the Sernageomin together with projects in preparation for the northern zone of Chile.