The mining industry stands to benefit hugely from crowdsourcing if it seizes the opportunities it provides when it comes to data sifting.
Mining exploration is losing momentum worldwide as discovering green-field deposits becomes more and more expensive with many of the international big-hitters cutting back on the budgets set aside for exploration to save money. Smaller companies have also been affected, many are functioning as vehicles for backdoor listings now.
Despite the decline in physical mining exploration, drilling and prospecting data still abounds which needs to be sifted through as it could very well lead to the next big deposit discovery.
Crowdsourcing has the potential to vastly speed up the data sifting process, while reducing costs. For those mining businesses struggling with cost cutting, crowdsourcing could very well be part of the answer.
One company taking a novel approach to crowdsourcing is Integra Gold Corp, who are holding a crowdsourcing competition to aid it in analysing 6 terabytes, or 75 years worth of prospecting data from the Quebec Sigma-Lamaque mine.
The amount of data to wade through is incomprehensible and is due partly to the fact that the mine has stood empty for almost 30 years until Integra Gold Corp bought the infrastructure, permits and land of the old mine out of insolvency last year.
“The sheer volume of data we now have on these mines would take Integra years to analyse on our own. We need a faster and more cost-effective method to analyse and interpret the data to identify additional gold targets. We want to unlock the value of this database by harnessing the collective brainpower of thousands of individuals around the world,” said an Integra Gold spokesperson.
Up for grabs is $1 million in prizes for participants who uncover any possible deposits at the mining site while analysing the data.
Goldcorp, a Canadian gold producer ran a crowdsourcing data sifting competition in 2000 for its Red Lake site. The results were astounding:
Mining exploration is losing momentum worldwide as discovering green-field deposits becomes more and more expensive.
Many of the international big-hitters have cut back on the budgets set aside for exploration to cut costs because of this. Smaller companies have also been affected, many are functioning as vehicles for backdoor listings now.