Mission Areas

Energy and Minerals

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Filter Total Items: 621
Year Published: 2016

Hyperspectral surveying for mineral resources in Alaska

Alaska is a major producer of base and precious metals and has a high potential for additional undiscovered mineral resources. However, discovery is hindered by Alaska’s vast size, remoteness, and rugged terrain. New methods are needed to overcome these obstacles in order to fully evaluate Alaska’s geology and mineral resource...

Kokaly, Raymond F.; Graham, Garth E.; Hoefen, Todd M.; Kelley, Karen D.; Johnson, Michaela R.; Hubbard, Bernard E.
Kokaly, R.F., Graham, G.E., Hoefen, T.M., Kelley, K.D., Johnson, M.R., and Hubbard, B.E., Hyperspectral surveying for mineral resources in Alaska: U.S. Geological Survey Fact Sheet 2016-3029, 2 p., http://dx.doi.org/10.3133/fs20163029.

Year Published: 2016

The Pilot Valley shoreline: An early record of Lake Bonneville dynamics: Chapter 3

The Pilot Valley shoreline is named for distinctive gravel beaches on the eastern, northern, and western sides of Pilot Valley playa, Utah. The shoreline has been identified across the Bonneville basin where it is characterized by one to three beach crests between ~ 1305 and 1309 m elevation, all overlain by deep-water marl of Lake...

Miller, David; Phelps, Geoffrey

Year Published: 2016

Accretionary lapilli: what’s holding them together?

Accretionary lapilli from Tagus cone, Isla Isabela, Galápagos were analyzed using scanning electron microscope (SEM) and energy-dispersive X-ray spectroscopy (EDS) techniques. Our main findings are (1) the lapilli formed and hardened in a few minutes while still aloft in the dispersing eruption column. (2) Palagonite rinds developed first...

Adams, Paul M.; Lynch, David K.; Buesch, David C.
Adams, P.M., Lynch, D.K., and Buesch, D.C., 2016, Accretionary lapilli: what’s holding them together? in Reynolds, R.E., ed, “Going LOCO: Investigations along the Lower Colorado River”, California State University Desert Studies Consortium, p. 256-265.

Year Published: 2016

Architecture, geochemistry, and paleomagnetic directions of the 5.42 Ma Broadwell Mesa basalt volcanic field, Bristol Mountains, California

No abstract available.

Buesch, David C.; Phelps, Geoffrey
Buesch, D.C., and Phelps, G.A., 2016, Architecture, geochemistry, and paleomagnetic directions of the 5.42 Ma Broadwell Mesa basalt volcanic field, Bristol Mountains, California: in Reynolds, R.E., ed, “Going LOCO: Investigations along the Lower Colorado River”, California State University Desert Studies Consortium, p. 253-255.

Year Published: 2016

Contemporary deformation in the Yakima fold and thrust belt estimated with GPS

Geodetic, geologic and palaeomagnetic data reveal that Oregon (western USA) rotates clockwise at 0.3 to 1.0° Ma−1 (relative to North America) about an axis near the Idaho–Oregon–Washington border, while northeast Washington is relatively fixed. This rotation has been going on for at least 15 Ma. The Yakima fold and thrust belt (YFTB) forms the...

McCaffrey, Robert; King, Robert W.; Wells, Ray; Lancaster, Matthew; Miller, M. Meghan

Year Published: 2016

Isotopically constrained lead sources in fugitive dust from unsurfaced roads in the southeast Missouri mining district

The isotopic composition of lead (Pb) in fugitive dust suspended by a vehicle from 13 unsurfaced roads in Missouri was measured to identify the source of Pb within an established long-term mining area. A three end-member model using 207Pb/206Pb and concentration as tracers resulted in fugitive dust samples plotting in the mixing field of well...

Witt, Emitt C.; Pribil, Michael; Hogan, John P; Wronkiewicz, David

Year Published: 2016

Chemical abrasion-SIMS (CA-SIMS) U-Pb dating of zircon from the late Eocene Caetano caldera, Nevada

Zircon geochronology is a critical tool for establishing geologic ages and time scales of processes in the Earth's crust. However, for zircons compromised by open system behavior, achieving robust dates can be difficult. Chemical abrasion (CA) is a routine step prior to thermal ionization mass spectrometry (TIMS) dating of zircon to remove...

Watts, Kathryn E.; Coble, Matthew A.; Vazquez, Jorge A.; Henry, Christopher D.; Colgan, Joseph P.; John, David A.

Year Published: 2016

Manual hierarchical clustering of regional geochemical data using a Bayesian finite mixture model

Interpretation of regional scale, multivariate geochemical data is aided by a statistical technique called “clustering.” We investigate a particular clustering procedure by applying it to geochemical data collected in the State of Colorado, United States of America. The clustering procedure partitions the field samples for the entire...

Ellefsen, Karl J.; Smith, David

Year Published: 2016

The geochemical atlas of Alaska, 2016

A rich legacy of geochemical data produced since the early 1960s covers the great expanse of Alaska; careful treatment of such data may provide significant and revealing geochemical maps that may be used for landscape geochemistry, mineral resource exploration, and geoenvironmental investigations over large areas. To maximize the spatial density...

Lee, Gregory K.; Yager, Douglas B.; Mauk, Jeffrey L.; Granitto, Matthew; Denning, Paul D.; Wang, Bronwen; Werdon, Melanie B.
Lee, G.K., Yager, D.B., Mauk, J.L, Granitto, Matthew, Denning, P.D., Wang, Bronwen, and Werdon, M.B., 2016, The Geochemical Atlas of Alaska, 2016: U.S. Geological Survey Data Series 908, 25 p., 272 sheets (11"×17"), GIS database, http://dx.doi.org/10.3133/ds908.

Year Published: 2016

Geology and geologic history of the Moscow-Pullman basin, Idaho and Washington, from late Grande Ronde to late Saddle Mountains time

The Moscow-Pullman basin, located on the eastern margin of the Columbia River flood basalt province, consists of a subsurface mosaic of interlayered Miocene sediments and lava flows of the Imnaha, Grande Ronde, Wanapum, and Saddle Mountains Basalts of the Columbia River Basalt Group. This sequence is ~1800 ft (550 m) thick in the east around...

Bush, John H; Garwood, Dean L; Dunlap, Pamela
Bush, J.H., Garwood, D.L., and Dunlap, Pamela, 2016, Geology and geologic history of the Moscow-Pullman basin, Idaho and Washington, from late Grande Ronde to late Saddle Mountains time, in Lewis, R.S., and Schmidt, K.L., eds., xxxx: Geological Society of America Field Guide 41, p. xxx–xxx, doi: 10.1130/2016.0041(05).

Year Published: 2016

New perspectives on a 140-year legacy of mining and abandoned mine cleanup in the San Juan Mountains, Colorado

The Gold King mine water release that occurred on 5 August 2015 near the historical mining community of Silverton, Colorado, highlights the environmental legacy that abandoned mines have on the environment. During reclamation efforts, a breach of collapsed workings at the Gold King mine sent 3 million gallons of acidic and metal-rich mine water...

Yager, Douglas B.; Fey, David L.; Chapin, Thomas; Johnson, Raymond H.

Year Published: 2016

Gravity and magnetic studies of the eastern Mojave Desert, California and Nevada

IntroductionFrom May 2011 to August 2014, the U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) collected gravity data at more than 2,300 stations and physical property measurements on more than 640 rock samples from outcrops in the eastern Mojave Desert, California and Nevada. Gravity, magnetic, and physical-property data are used to study and locate regional...

Denton, Kevin M.; Ponce, David A.
Denton, K.M., and Ponce, D.A., 2016, Gravity and magnetic studies of the eastern Mojave Desert, California and Nevada: U.S. Geological Survey Open-File Report 2016-1070, 20 p., http://dx.doi.org/10.3133/ofr20161070.

Filter Total Items: 119
Image shows a rock outcropping surrounded by desert vegation
2015 (approx.)
A calcrete outcropping near Sulfur Springs Draw in Texas. This deposit dates to the Pliocene and Pleistocene, and hosts uranium-vanadate minerals.
Image shows a sample of the mineral finchite with a chair wheel for scale
2015 (approx.)
A sample of finchite, a newly discovered uranium mineral. Finchite is the yellow material on the surface of the rock. Finchite is found in the late Pleistocene sediments deposited during the Illinoian glacial stage. It was first observed in Martin County, Texas. Read more about our uranium research here .
Image shows a landscape view of the Southern High Plains
2015 (approx.)
The Southern High Plains of New Mexico, Oklahoma, and Texas. USGS conducted a uranium assessment in this region in 2015.
Image shows a man examine rock layers
2015 (approx.)
USGS scientist Bradley Van Gosen examines rock layers for the newly discovered mineral finchite near Lamesa, Texas. Van Gosen was the first to recognize the existence of the new mineral, which was named for long-time USGS uranium geologist Warren Finch. Read more about our uranium research here .
Image shows a woman sitting on a rock in a stream
2015 (approx.)
A USGS geologist pans for monazite and rare earth minerals in Wolf Creek, which cuts through the Melozitna granite. This area is part of the Bureau of Land Management's Central Yukon Planning Area, which USGS did a mineral assessment of in 2015.
Image shows two scientists in hard hats collecting a research core aboard a drill rig
2015 (approx.)
Scientists aboard the D/S Chikyu prepare to collect a research core drilled from marine sediments in the Indian Ocean. This research is part of the 2015 Indian National Gas Hydrate Program Expedition 02 (NGHP-02), which is a follow-up to the 2006 NGHP-01. NGHP-02 identified several large deposits of potentially producible gas hydrates in the Indian Ocean. This project was led by the Government of...
Image shows sand in a hand
2015 (approx.)
Frac sands used in unconventional oil and gas development.
October 21, 2015
Elliott Barnhart, a hydrologist with the USGS Wyoming-Montana Water Science Center, describes his work developing what could be a cleaner way to develop coal.
Image shows USGS scientists standing beside a drill rig in protective gear.
September 16, 2015
USGS scientists drilling a research core near Waco, Texas. This core was drilled by USGS during field work for an oil and gas assessment for the Eagle Ford of the Gulf Coast Basins. Cores like these provide information on the various rock layers, such as their make-up, their age, etc. The USGS assesses undiscovered, technically recoverable oil and gas resources for the onshore United States and...
Image shows USGS scientists standing beside a drill rig in protective gear.
September 16, 2015
USGS scientists drilling a research core near Waco, Texas. This core was drilled by USGS during field work for an oil and gas assessment for the Eagle Ford of the Gulf Coast Basins. Cores like these provide information on the various rock layers, such as their make-up, their age, etc. The USGS assesses undiscovered, technically recoverable oil and gas resources for the onshore United States and...
A vehicle is shown at night, with its trunk open and floodlights on
September 16, 2015
USGS scientists drilling a research core near Waco, Texas. This core was drilled by USGS during field work for an oil and gas assessment for the Eagle Ford of the Gulf Coast Basins. Cores like these provide information on the various rock layers, such as their make-up, their age, etc. The USGS assesses undiscovered, technically recoverable oil and gas resources for the onshore United States and...
Image shows USGS scientists standing beside a drill rig in protective gear.
September 16, 2015
USGS scientists drilling a research core near Waco, Texas. This core was drilled by USGS during field work for an oil and gas assessment for the Eagle Ford of the Gulf Coast Basins. Cores like these provide information on the various rock layers, such as their make-up, their age, etc. The USGS assesses undiscovered, technically recoverable oil and gas resources for the onshore United States and...
Filter Total Items: 120
USGS science for a changing world logo
February 9, 2016

WASHINGTON—The President’s fiscal year (FY) 2017 budget request for the U.S. Geological Survey reflects the USGS's vital role in addressing some of the most pressing challenges of the 21st Century by advancing scientific discovery and innovation.

Publication Cover for Public Access to USGS Research
February 8, 2016

The U.S. Geological Survey is implementing new measures that will improve public access to USGS-funded science as detailed in its new public access plan.

Collage of photos related to Rare-earth elements (REEs)
January 28, 2016

In 2015, United States mines produced an estimated $78.3 billion of mineral raw materials—down 3percent from $80.8 billion in 2014, the U.S. Geological Survey announced today in its Mineral Commodity Summaries 2016.

Image: Brown Bats with White Nose Syndrome
January 19, 2016

FORT COLLINS, Colorado – Reports of bat deaths worldwide due to human causes largely unique to the 21st century are markedly rising, according to a new USGS-led analysis published in Mammal Review.

Alaska Geologic Map
January 5, 2016

ANCHORAGE, Alaska – A new digital geologic map of Alaska is being released today providing land users, managers and scientists geologic information for the evaluation of land use in relation to resource extraction, conservation, natural hazards and recreation.

Scientists preparing sediment quality sampling supplies for deployment in advance of Hurricane Joaquin.
December 18, 2015

Medical Geology is an earth science specialty that concerns how geologic materials and earth processes affect human health. 

A map showing the Barnett Shale assessment area in east Texas
December 17, 2015

The Barnett Shale contains estimated mean volumes of 53 trillion cubic feet of shale natural gas, 172 million barrels of shale oil and 176 million barrels of natural gas liquids, according to an updated assessment by the U.S. Geological Survey. This estimate is for undiscovered, technically recoverable resources.

USGS science for a changing world logo
December 17, 2015

Key nonfuel mineral commodities that support the U.S. economy and national security are increasingly being sourced from outside the U.S., according to a new U.S. Geological Survey publication.

Figure showing the top three ranked areas.
December 14, 2015

A new approach to ranking copper resources could result in identifying future supplies of copper while saving both time and money, according to the U.S. Geological Survey.

Graph: Annual mine production of tantalum contained in mined concentrates
December 10, 2015

Reston, VA— The United States is completely reliant on imports of tantalum, which is a commonly used element in electronics, to meet its domestic consumption for economic and national security needs. A new U.S. Geological Survey report illustrates the dramatic change of the international sources of primary mined tantalum over the past 15 years.

Map: Area of Uranium Assessment in Texas
December 2, 2015

The uranium oxide is located in sandstone formations throughout the South Texas Coastal Plain, which borders the Gulf of Mexico. The area has long been known to contain uranium, and two mines are currently in operation, with a number of companies actively exploring for uranium.

Map of Undiscovered Cooper Estimate in the Middle East
November 18, 2015

More than 180 million metric tons of undiscovered copper resources may be found in an area of the Middle East that covers Turkey, Georgia, Armenia, Azerbaijan, Iran, western Pakistan and southwestern Afghanistan, according to a recent assessment by the U.S. Geological Survey.