Mineral-resource data bases

Fact Sheet 076-97



Data bases are essential for modern scientific research. The new and exciting work being done in the Mineral Resource Program in the U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) usually begins with the question, "Where are the known deposits?" A mineral-resource data base containing this type of information and more can be useful not just to USGS scientists, but to anyone who needs such data. Users of the data bases from outside the USGS include mining and exploration companies, environmental groups, academia, other Federal Agencies, and the general public. At present, the USGS has two large mineral-resource data bases, MRDS (Mineral Resource Data System) and MAS (Minerals Availability System). MRDS was built and is mamtained by the USGS, and MAS was built and maintained by the Bureau of Mines. In 1996, after the Bureau was abolished, MAS was transferred to the USGS. The two data bases were compiled for different purposes and contain very different mformation. For instance, MAS contains information on costs, details of mining methods, and feasibility studies. MRDS has mineralogical and geologic data that are not contained in MAS. Because they are both mineral-resource data bases, however, they contain some information in common, such as location, name(s) of sites, and commodities present. Both data bases are international in scope, and both are quite large. MRDS contains over 110,000 records, while MAS has over 220,000. One reason that MAS has more records is that it contains information on smelters, mill sites, and fossil fuel sites, as well as mineral- resource sites. The USGS is working to combine the information in both data bases. This is a large undertaking that will require some years to complete. In the interim, information from both data bases will still be available

Additional publication details

Publication type Report
Publication Subtype USGS Numbered Series
Title Mineral-resource data bases
Series title Fact Sheet
Series number 076-97
DOI 10.3133/fs07697
Year Published 1997
Language English
Publisher U.S. Geological Survey
Publisher location Reston, VA
Description 2 p.
Additional Online Files (Y/N) N