Mission Areas

Energy and Minerals

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Filter Total Items: 785
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.

Year Published: 2016

Historical files from Federal Government mineral exploration-assistance programs, 1950 to 1974

The Defense Minerals Administration (DMA), Defense Minerals Exploration Administration (DMEA), and Office of Minerals Exploration (OME) mineral exploration programs were active over the period 1950–1974. Under these programs, the Federal Government contributed financial assistance in the exploration for certain strategic and critical minerals. The...

Frank, David G.
Frank, D.G., 2016, Historical files from Federal Government mineral exploration-assistance programs, 1950 to 1974: U.S. Geological Survey Data Series 1004, http://dx.doi.org/10.3133/ds1004.

Year Published: 2016

Surface slip during large Owens Valley earthquakes

The 1872 Owens Valley earthquake is the third largest known historical earthquake in California. Relatively sparse field data and a complex rupture trace, however, inhibited attempts to fully resolve the slip distribution and reconcile the total moment release. We present a new, comprehensive record of surface slip based on lidar and field...

Haddon, E.K.; Amos, C.B.; Zielke, O.; Jayko, Angela S.; Burgmann, R.

Year Published: 2016

Geologic map of the Vancouver and Orchards quadrangles and parts of the Portland and Mount Tabor quadrangles, Clark County, Washington, and Multnomah County, Oregon

IntroductionThis is a 1:24,000-scale geologic map of the Vancouver and Orchards quadrangles and parts of the Portland and Mount Tabor quadrangles in the States of Washington and Oregon. The map area is within the Portland Basin and includes most of the city of Vancouver, Washington; parts of Clark County, Washington; and a small part of...

O'Connor, Jim E.; Cannon, Charles M.; Mangano, Joseph F.; Evarts, Russell C.
O’Connor, J.E., Cannon, C.M., Mangano, J.F., and Evarts, R.C., 2016, Geologic map of the Vancouver and Orchards quadrangles and parts of the Portland and Mount Tabor quadrangles, Clark County, Washington, and Multnomah County, Oregon: U.S. Geological Survey Scientific Investigations Map 3357, scale 1:24,000, http://dx.doi.org/10.3133/sim3357.

Year Published: 2016

Geologic map of the Morena Reservoir 7.5-minute quadrangle, San Diego County, California

IntroductionMapping in the Morena Reservoir 7.5-minute quadrangle began in 1980, when the Hauser Wilderness Area, which straddles the Morena Reservoir and Barrett Lake quadrangles, was mapped for the U.S. Forest Service. Mapping was completed in 1993–1994. The Morena Reservoir quadrangle contains part of a regional-scale Late Jurassic(?) to Early...

Todd, Victoria R.
Todd, V.R., 2016, Geologic map of the Morena Reservoir 7.5-minute quadrangle, San Diego County, California: U.S. Geological Survey Open-File Report 95–50, 12 p., scale 1:24,000, http://dx.doi.org/10.3133/ofr9550.

Year Published: 2016

Natural thorium resources and recovery: Options and impacts

This paper reviews the front end of the thorium fuel cycle, including the extent and variety of thorium deposits, the potential sources of thorium production, and the physical and chemical technologies required to isolate and purify thorium. Thorium is frequently found within rare earth element–bearing minerals that exist in diverse types of...

Ault, Timothy; Van Gosen, Bradley S.; Krahn, Steven; Croff, Allen

Year Published: 2016

Seasonal changes in atmospheric noise levels and the annual variation in pigeon homing performance

Repeated releases of experienced homing pigeons from single sites were conducted between 1972 and 1974 near Cornell University in upstate New York and between 1982 and 1983 near the University of Pittsburgh in western Pennsylvania, USA. No annual variation in homing performance was observed at these sites in eastern North America, in contrast to...

Hagstrum, Jonathan T.; McIsaac, Hugh P.; Drob, Douglas P.
Hagstrum, J.T., McIsaac, H.P. and Drob, D.P., 2016, Seasonal changes in atmospheric noise levels and the annual variation in pigeon homing performance: Journal of Comparative Physiology A, v. 202, p. 413-424, doi:10.1007/s00359-016-1087-y.

Year Published: 2016

The F'derik-Zouerate iron district: Mesoarchean and Paleoproterozoic iron formation of the Tiris Complex, Islamic Republic of Mauritania

High-grade hematitic iron ores (of HIF, containing 60-65 wt%Fe) have been mined in Mauritania since 1952 from Superior-type iron deposits of the F'derik-Zouerate district.  Depletion of the high-grade ores in recent years has resulted in new exploration projects focused on lower-grade magnetite ores occurring in Algoma-type banded iron...

Bouabdellah, Mohammed; Slack, John F.; Taylor, Cliff D.; Finn, Carol A.; Anderson, Eric D.; Bradley, Dwight C.; Joud, Mohamed; Taleb Mohamed, Ahmed; Horton, John D.; Johnson, Craig A.

Year Published: 2016

The Chahnaly low sulfidation epithermal gold deposit, western Makran volcanic arc, southeastern Iran

The Chahnaly low-sulfidation epithermal Au deposit and nearby Au prospects are located northwest of the intermittently active Bazman stratovolcano on the western end of the Makran volcanic arc, which formed as the result of subduction of the remnant Neo-Tethyan oceanic crust beneath the Lut block. The arc hosts the Siah Jangal epithermal and...

Sholeh, Ali; Rastad, Ebrahim; Huston, David L.; Gemmell, J. Bruce; Taylor, Ryan D.
Sholeh, A., Rastad, E., Huston, D., Gemmell, J.B., and Taylor, R.D., 2016, The Chahnaly low sulfidation epithermal gold deposit, western Makran volcanic arc, southeastern Iran: Economic Geology, v. 111, p. 619-639

Year Published: 2016

Assessment of undiscovered oil and gas resources of the Taoudeni Basin Province, Mali and Mauritania, 2015

Using a geology-based assessment methodology, the U.S. Geological Survey estimated undiscovered, technically recoverable mean resources of 160 million barrels of conventional oil, 1,880 billion cubic feet of conventional gas, 602 million barrels of shale oil, and 6,395 billion cubic feet of shale gas in the Taoudeni Basin Province in Mali and...

Brownfield, Michael E.; Schenk, Christopher J.; Klett, Timothy R.; Tennyson, Marilyn E.; Pitman, Janet K.; Gaswirth, Stephanie B.; Le, Phuong A.; Leathers-Miller, Heidi M.; Mercier, Tracey J.; Marra, Kristen R.; Hawkins, Sarah J.
Brownfield, M.E., Schenk, C.J., Klett, T.R., Tennyson, M.E., Pitman, J.K., Gaswirth, S.B., Le, P.A., Leathers-Miller, H.M., Mercier, T.J., Marra, K.R., and Hawkins, S.J., 2016, Assessment of undiscovered oil and gas resources of the Taoudeni Basin Province, Mali and Mauritania, 2015: U.S. Geological Survey Fact Sheet 2016-3003, 2 p., http://dx.doi.org/10.3133/fs20163003.

Year Published: 2016

A process for reducing rocks and concentrating heavy minerals

To obtain minerals suitable for age-dating and other analyses, it is necessary to first reduce the mineral-bearing rock to a fine, sand-like consistency. Reducing whole rock requires crushing, grinding, and sieving. Ideally, the reduced material should range in size from 80- to 270-mesh (an opening between wires in a sieve). The openings in an 80-...

Strong, Thomas R.; Driscoll, Rhonda L.
Strong, T.R., and Driscoll, R.L., 2016, A process for reducing rocks and concentrating heavy minerals: U.S. Geological Survey Open-File Report 2016–1022, 16 p., http://dx.doi.org/10.3133/ofr20161022.

Year Published: 2016

Geology and undiscovered resource assessment of the potash-bearing Central Asia Salt Basin, Turkmenistan, Uzbekistan, Tajikistan, and Afghanistan: Chapter AA in Global mineral resource assessment

Undiscovered potash resources in the Central Asia Salt Basin (CASB) of Turkmenistan, Uzbekistan, Tajikistan, and Afghanistan were assessed as part of a global mineral resource assessment led by the U.S. Geological Survey. The term “potash” refers to potassium-bearing, water-soluble salts derived from evaporite basins, where seawater...

Wynn, Jeff; Orris, Greta J.; Dunlap, Pamela; Cocker, Mark D.; Bliss, James D.
Wynn, Jeff, Orris, G.J., Dunlap, Pamela, Cocker, M.D., and Bliss, J.D., 2016, Geology and undiscovered resource assessment of the potash-bearing Central Asia Salt Basin, Turkmenistan, Uzbekistan, Tajikistan, and Afghanistan: U.S. Geological Survey Scientific Investigations Report SIR 2010–5090–AA, 106 p., and spatial data, http://dx.doi.org/10.3133/sir20105090AA.

Filter Total Items: 140
Image shows a detail of a yellow mineral on white rock
December 31, 2015

Uranium-Vanadate Mineral in Calcrete

A uranium-vanadate mineral in calcrete. This sample came from near the Sulfur Springs Draw in Texas. USGS conducted an assessment of uranium resources in this region in 2015.

Image shows a USGS scientist leaning against a rock outcropping with trees in the background
December 31, 2015

Shearing of the Melozitna Granite

Geologist and cataclastic shear zones in the Melozitna granite in the Ruby batholith. This granite contains abundant monazite and high levels of thorium and rare earth elements. The shear zones accelerate erosion of the granite into streams, where the monazite that contains the rare earth elements can be concentrated. This area is part of the Bureau of Land Management's Central Yukon Planning...

Image shows two scientists in hard hats collecting a research core aboard a drill rig
December 31, 2015

Collecting a Gas Hydrate Research Core from the Indian Ocean

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...

Image shows a woman sitting on a rock in a stream
December 31, 2015

Panning for Rare Earths

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 a scanning electron microscope image of finchite
December 31, 2015

Scanning Electron Microscope Image of Finchite

A scanning electron microscope image of the newly discovered mineral finchite. The Denver Microbeam Lab provided this scan of finchite in order to help describe and identify the mineral as a new one. Finchite is a uranium mineral first observed in Martin County, Texas. Read more about our uranium research here

Image shows a sample of the mineral finchite with a chair wheel for scale
December 31, 2015

Finchite Mineral

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 sample of finchite with a quarter for scale
December 31, 2015

Finchite Mineral

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 man examine rock layers
December 31, 2015

USGS Scientist Examining Texas Rock Layers for Finchite Minerals

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 dry creek bed with two men standing on the banks
December 31, 2015

USGS Scientists Seeking Finchite by the Sulfur Springs Draw in Texas

Between Lamesa and Big Spring, Texas, runs the Sulfur Spring Draw, a dry creek. It's the site of an economic calcrete-type uranium deposit, the Sulfur Springs Draw Deposit, where a new mineral was discovered in 2015. The mineral, first observed by USGS scientist Bradley Van Gosen, is a uranium-mineral named finchite after long-time USGS uranium geologist Warren Finch. Read more about our...

USGS scientists stand on the edge of a ship, preparing equipment to go into the ocean
December 31, 2015

Sediment Sampling for Gas Hydrate

USGS scientists collect sediment samples in a gas hydrates area during a cruise on the U.S. Atlantic margin in 2015.

Image shows sand in a hand
December 31, 2015

Frac Sands in Hand

Frac sands used in unconventional oil and gas development.

Image shows a rock outcropping surrounded by desert vegation
December 31, 2015

Calcrete near Sulfur Springs Draw

A calcrete outcropping near Sulfur Springs Draw in Texas. This deposit dates to the Pliocene and Pleistocene, and hosts uranium-vanadate minerals.

Filter Total Items: 135
Date published: March 23, 2016

USGS Assesses 39–54 Billion Metric Tons of Undiscovered Potash Resources in Central Asia

The Central Asia Salt Basin of Turkmenistan, Uzbekistan, Tajikistan and Afghanistan has the potential to contain between 39 and 54 billion metric tons of undiscovered potash resources, according to a global mineral resource assessment led by the U.S. Geological Survey (USGS). Known potash resources in the Central Asia Salt Basin consist of 1.63 billion metric tons.

Date published: February 17, 2016

Multidisciplinary Science Addresses Complex Resource and Environmental Issues

The ongoing resource, climate, hazards and environmental issues of the United States are addressed in a new U.S. Geological Survey product, providing an overview of the USGS Mineral Resources Program's multidisciplinary science.

Date published: February 15, 2016

EarthWord – Ore

The naturally occurring material from which a mineral or minerals of economic value can be extracted. Usually minerals, especially metals, are mined first in ore form, then refined later.

Date published: February 9, 2016

President’s 2017 Budget Proposes $1.2 Billion for the USGS

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.

Date published: February 8, 2016

USGS Increases Public Access to Scientific Research

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.

Date published: January 28, 2016

Value of U.S. Mineral Production Decreased in 2015 with Lower Metal Prices

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.

Date published: January 19, 2016

Decades of Bat Observations Reveal Uptick in New Causes of Mass Mortality

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.

Date published: January 5, 2016

First Ever Digital Geologic Map of Alaska Published

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.

Date published: December 18, 2015

EarthWord – Medical Geology

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

Date published: December 17, 2015

USGS Estimates 53 Trillion Cubic Feet of Gas Resources in Barnett Shale

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.

Date published: December 17, 2015

U.S. Reliance on Nonfuel Mineral Imports Increasing

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.

Date published: December 14, 2015

New Method for Ranking Global Copper Deposits Saves Time and Money

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.