Rio Tinto and USGS cooperate in search for rare earths and other raw materials

28. October 2021 | Market

Airborne measurements to provide information about Montana’s mineral resources.

The United States Geological Survey (USGS), together with mining and metals company Rio Tinto, will conduct airborne geophysical surveys in southwestern Montana. The goal is to locate prospective deposits of critical raw materials such as rare earths, as well as copper and gold.

The area is known for mineral potential, according to a joint press release from the project partners. The new measurements would now provide even deeper insights into the complex geology of the area.

The USGS’s first-ever partnership with a resource company is part of the Earth Mapping Resources Initiative (Earth MRI). This is designed to provide information about the geological potential of the United States. The data collected will then be published on the MRI website.

Due to increasing tensions between the U.S. and China, the issue of resource independence from Asia is currently gaining rapid momentum. Accordingly, the search for new raw material deposits is significant for the United States.

Photo: Istock/PeterSaltz

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