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Matrix exploration

 Around three-quarters of Sweden’s and half of Finland’s surface is covered by till. One of the basic ideas behind the unique exploration method – matrix exploration – that has been developed by Nordic Mines and on which the company’s exploration work is based, is that the composition of the till mirrors that of the underlying bedrock.

The matrix exploration method, in its first stage of analysing soil samples, shows the type of bedrock found in the area. If the results from these analyses indicate high grades of interesting metals, Nordic Mines will start a more systematic evaluation through drilling and testing the lower layers of the till and the underlying bedrock. After a series of chemical analyses, an evaluation is performed based on statistical models.

 Compared to more traditional methods, this type of exploration is both fast and cost effective. The main reason is that large areas can be scanned in a short period of time in order to identify mineralisations before starting more costly investigations, such as core drilling. One single sample of till can mirror up to one square kilometre of the bedrock.

 Since the matrix exploration was launched, a large number of deposits have been identified through it. In spring  2007, the unique “Borrugglan” exploration machine was taken into use, which made the exploration process even more efficient. Its high capacity and its ability to collect continuous samples from both till and rock down to deep levels has made it a key resource in Nordic Mines’ exploration work. The machine’s low ground pressure also makes it gentle to the terrain.