Geology and Ore 36, 2024

Airborne geophysical data from Greenland

This issue of Geology and Ore provides a 2024 update on the airborne geophysical and remote sensing surveys from Greenland, previously presented in Geology and Ore no. 22 in 2013. During the last decade, a series of local hyperspectral surveys and one regional magnetic survey have been acquired on behalf of GEUS and the Greenlandic government as well as many license-specific geophysical datasets from the mineral exploration industry has been released. Geophysical data is a major source of information on the structure and composition of the Earth. New technological developments with respect to all data acquisition, processing, and interpretation place geophysics as an important key to improved mapping and understanding of the Earth’s structures. Airborne geophysical surveying is a particular efficient tool for systematic investigations of large areas as is the case in Greenland. Easy access to geophysical data is recognised as being of utmost importance to provide potential users with an overview of publicly available datasets as well as to use these data and reports for their exploration and research activities. In fulfilling this for Greenland, a newly established web-based solution gives access to information and data from both newly acquired surveys and legacy data from older surveys, and presents overview images of airborne geophysical data compilations.

Geology and Ore 36, 2024 is a revised version of number 22, 2013. 


Today, the use of airborne geophysical surveys as a fundamental tool in mineral exploration and regional geological mapping has become standard practice. However, Greenland’s remoteness, lack of infrastructure, and arctic and alpine conditions make geophysical data acquisition more challenging and expensive than in most other regions, and not all areas have been systematic surveyed yet. The southern, western, and southeastern parts of the ice-free area are now well-covered by regional high-resolution magnetic surveys, but large parts of the northern and northeastern parts still lack systematic regional geophysical surveys of any kind, and future surveying activities are required to fill these gaps. Despite the lack of regional background data, rising exploration activity in the past two decades has led to a large increase of more detailed license specific geophysical datasets and many areas prospective for mineral deposits are well-covered not only with magnetic, but often also electromagnetic, gravity or radiometry data. In addition to the classical geophysical methods, hyperspectral imaging techniques have great potential for mapping Greenland’s geology due to the excellent rock exposure. In the early 2000s airborne hyperspectral surveys were introduced and since then several areas have been surveyed by the Geological Survey of Denmark and Greenland – GEUS and on behalf of the Government of Greenland. The majority of this data is now publicly available and accessible via the Greenland Mineral Resources Portal at no cost.

Airborne geophysical data from Greenland (GEUS)

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