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dot  What is the CONSOREM ?

The mineral exploration research consortium (CONSOREM) is an applied research structure which was launched thanks to a subvention of the Saguenay – Lac-Saint-Jean CRCD (Conseil Régional de Concertation et de Développement) through a regional impact program. The CONSOREM deals with mineral exploration technologies in Quebec and represents a link between different members and partners of the mineral industry that come from the industrial, governmental and educational (university) fields. Its goal is to create a dynamic relationship between these partners in order to contribute to the revitalization of this sector of activity in Quebec. The CONSOREM provides the following to the industry :
      - 1) Concepts and modern mineral exploration techniques that will optimise the discovery of new deposits in resource areas;
      - 2) Highly qualified specialists in mineral exploration.

dot  Foundations of the CONSOREM

Research in mineral exploration is primarily accomplished in an independent manner by the different members and partners of the mineral sector. This situation is explained by the strong competition related to property acquisition and to strategic positioning on territories with high exploration potential. This creates a form of isolation for the companies, which are often confronted with similar problems without having the human or the financial resources to undertake individual research projects.

Mineral research exploration is carried out at the geographical or at the methodological level. The research then deals, respectively, with a specific territory or with the development of tools and guides to make exploration more effective, independent of territory.

At the geographical level, research takes the form of ground surveys designed to increase the geoscientific knowledge base. Work carried out in new territories enables to determine the mineral potential while work carried out in mining camps helps to determine parameters which lead to the understanding of the processes responsible for the formation of the mineral deposits, hence enable the prediction of future mineralized sites.

At the methodological level, research can help establish exploration strategies using modern mapping techniques, particularly in terms of computer softwares – geomatics, multi-spectral imagery, SPOT-Landsat, geophysical images and satellite positioning systems.

Training of qualified personnel in mineral resources represents an essential mission to ensure the vitality and continuity of an important economic sector in Quebec, in Canada and elsewhere in the world. And yet, these last few years have been marked by a sensible decrease in the number of geologists with an expertise in mineral exploration. This situation is explained by many factors, the most important one being the unfavourable economic cycles, which influence mining activity and directly impact exploration activities, the first ones to suffer in periods of financial restraints. This element is dramatic because these exploration activities represent the foundation to any process that leads to the discovery of new deposits and this situation discourages young geologists to pursue their career in this field.

The mineral sector is in need of specialists with a solid educational background in order to take up the challenges related to mineral resources exploration optimised by the identification of parameters and of areas favourable to the discovery of new deposits. This future generation of specialists is possible with more integrated training in terms of university programs and with the close collaboration of university research and the industry sector. The CONSOREM is well positioned to promote these actions.

The mineral exploration research consortium represents a groundbreaking project for the province of Quebec because this infrastructure, which combines the expertise of the educational and governmental fields and of companies of the mineral sector, enables to :

dot  Mandate of the CONSOREM

The mandate of the CONSOREM is to answer to the specific needs of the members and partners of the industry through suited research projects on cutting-edge subjects with strong economic implications. The objectives are the following :

The CONSOREM develops two types of applied research: thematic projects and methodological projects.