DOI: 10.1144/geochem2023-013 ISSN:

Review of till geochemistry and indicator mineral methods for mineral exploration in glaciated terrain

M.B. McClenaghan, R.C. Paulen, I.R. Smith, J.M. Rice, A. Plouffe, I. McMartin, J.E. Campbell, M. Lehtonen, M. Parsasadr, C.E. Beckett-Brown
  • General Earth and Planetary Sciences
  • Geochemistry and Petrology
  • General Environmental Science
  • General Chemistry

Since the 1970s, till geochemical and indicator mineral methods for mineral exploration, provenance studies and environmental research in glaciated terrain have been developed, tested, and refined. This paper summarizes these methods, focussing on field and laboratory methods for till geochemical, indicator mineral, and boulder surveys. This review of protocols is meant to be a guide for the mineral exploration industry and publicly funded agencies. The paper summarizes till as a sample medium, describes the formation of glacial dispersal trains, and methods for till sample collection, sample processing, matrix geochemistry, indicator mineral analyses, quality assurance/quality control (QA/QC) procedures, and data reporting and interpretation. The methods described here can be used to conduct reconnaissance- to deposit-scale till sampling surveys to assess mineral resource potential and establish environmental baselines.

Thematic collection: This article is part of the Reviews in Exploration Geochemistry collection available at:

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