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Crystalline basement map of Mauritania derived from filtered aeromagnetic data (deliverable 54_1), Aeromagnetic and geological structure map of Mauritania (phase V, deliverable 54_2), Maximum depth to basement map of Mauritania derived from Euler analysis

January 1, 2015

In 1996, at the request of the Government of the Islamic Republic of Mauritania, a team of U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) scientists produced a strategic plan for the acquisition, improvement and modernization of multidisciplinary sets of data to support the growth of the Mauritanian minerals sector and to highlight the geological and mineral exploration potential of the country. In 1999, the Ministry of Petroleum, Energy, and Mines of the Islamic Republic of Mauritania implemented a program for the acquisition of the recommended basic geoscientific information, termed the first Projet de Renforcement Institutionnel du Secteur Minier (Project for Institutional Capacity Building in the Mining Sector, PRISM-I). As a result of the PRISM-I efforts, a great deal of new geological, geophysical, geochemical, remote sensing, and hydrological data became available for evaluation and synthesis. However, the Ministry of Petroleum, Energy, and Mines recognized that additional work was required to extract the full benefit of the data before it could be of greatest use to the international community and of benefit to the Mauritanian minerals and development sector.

To achieve this benefit, the Ministry of Petroleum, Energy, and Mines implemented a second Projet de Renforcement Institutionnel du Secteur Minier (PRISM-II) in 2006 to consolidate, synthesize, and interpret all of the existing data, create a new 1:1,000,000 scale geologic map, and define the mineral resource potential of the country. A consortium in which the USGS was the lead scientific agency carried out the majority of the PRISM-II work. In 2008, the USGS Mauritania Minerals Project was interrupted due to political changes in Mauritania. PRISM-II work resumed in 2011, and was completed in 2013 with the delivery of over 40 separate written reports and plates, an access file containing the Mauritanian National Mineral Deposits Database, and an interactive GIS containing all of the multi-disciplinary data and interpretive areas of mineral resource potential in Mauritania.

This report contains the USGS results of the PRISM-II Mauritania Minerals Project and is presented in cooperation with the Ministry of Petroleum, Energy, and Mines of the Islamic Republic of Mauritania. The Report is composed of separate chapters consisting of multidisciplinary interpretive reports with accompanying plates on the geology, structure, geochronology, geophysics, hydrogeology, geochemistry, remote sensing (Landsat TM and ASTER), and SRTM and ASTER digital elevation models of Mauritania. The syntheses of these multidisciplinary data formed the basis for additional chapters containing interpretive reports on 12 different commodities and deposit types known to occur in Mauritania, accompanied by countrywide mineral resource potential maps of each commodity/deposit type. The commodities and deposit types represented include: (1) Ni, Cu, PGE, and Cr deposits hosted in ultramafic rocks; (2) orogenic, Carlin-like, and epithermal gold deposits; (3) polymetallic Pb-Zn-Cu vein deposits; (4) sediment-hosted Pb-Zn-Ag deposits of the SEDEX and Mississippi Valley-type; (5) sediment-hosted copper deposits; ( 6) volcanogenic massive sulfide deposits; (7) iron oxide copper-gold deposits; (8) uranium deposits; (9) Algoma-, Superior-, and oolitic-type iron deposits; (10) shoreline Ti-Zr placer deposits; (11) incompatible element deposits hosted in pegmatites, alkaline rocks, and carbonatites, and; (12) industrial mineral deposits. Additional chapters include the Mauritanian National Mineral Deposits Database are accompanied by an explanatory text and the Mauritania Minerals Project GIS that contains all of the interpretive layers created by USGS scientists. Raw data not in the public domain may be obtained from the Ministry of Petroleum, Energy, and Mines in Nouakchott, Mauritania.