Companhia de Pesquisa de Recursos Minerais (Geological Survey of Brazil or CPRM) is legally bound to act as Brazil’s official agency for gathering data and information on Brazilian geology, minerals and water resources. The company manage a complex set of databases and theme-based georeferenced information systems, as well as a vast collection of documents, maps and images, which are put made available to the general public.
CPRM has operational offices throughout Brazil. There are eight regional offices in Manaus (Amazonas), Belém (Pará), Recife (Pernambuco), Goiânia (Goiás), Salvador (Bahia), Belo Horizonte (Minas Gerais), São Paulo (São Paulo) and Porto Alegre (Rio Grande do Sul). These are where projects are carried out and where most of the institution’s operations are centered. The company also have three smaller operations facilities in Porto Velho (Rondônia), Teresina (Piauí) and Fortaleza (Ceará). There are three support centers, or small offices that provide representation and operational support, in Natal (Rio Grande do Norte), Cuiabá (Mato Grosso) and Criciúma (Santa Catarina). The company’s political headquarter is in Brasilia, while the main administrative office and technical departments are in Rio de Janeiro. CPRM’s three training centers are in Apiaí (São Paulo), Morro do Chapéu (Bahia) and Caçapava do Sul (Rio Grande do Sul).
Geology and the related activities carried out by CPRM, are performed within the context of the Geology of Brazil Program, which basically comprises geological surveying, as well as scientific and technical research and studies in the following fields of knowledge: Geology, Geophysics, Geochemistry, Geochronology, Marine Geology, Paleontology and Remote Sensing.
Geophysical services comprise, airborne geophysics survey, magnetic and gammaspectrometry data processing, data organization and storage in databases; airborne geophysics maps generation; geophysical maps interpretation and integration with geology; mineral and groundwater thematic data; dissemination of geophysical data for the scientific community; ground geophysics surveys using different methods; ground geophysics as support for land use environment and groundwater projects.
The geochemical surveys aim to help the development of projects of the Geology of Brazil Program (PGB), through exploration techniques by collecting active stream sediments (drainage) and analysing them by Inductively Coupled Plasma – Mass Spectrometry – ICP-MS to about 70 chemical elements. This analytical method is highly sensitive and capable of simultaneous analysis of a range of metals at below the parts per a million level. In the same way, the sampling of pan concentrate allows the direct detection of heavy minerals, specially metallic, by mineralogical studies of the grains.
Modern geochronology techniques have become indispensable resources for basic geological cartography, having been used systematically for some decades by geological surveys across the globe.
Over the past decade, the Geological Survey of Brazil started using the conventional TIMS U-Pb geochronological technique and SHRIMP, as well as the Pb-Pb by evaporation and Sm-Nd techniques in its geological cartography studies.
CPRM is an integrated part of the Ministry of Mines and Energy, directly linked to the State Secretariat of Geology, Mining and Mineral Processing.
Through its Division of Marine Geology (DIGEOM), CPRM provides human, technical and operational resources to meet the demands of the Brazilian society concerning the geological knowledge and the evaluation of the mineral potential of the Brazilian Legal Continental Shelf and adjacent oceanic areas in South Atlantic Ocean. DIGEOM activities are carried out in partnership with Brazilian Navy and Brazilian universities.
In this context, the mission of CPRM is to provide geological information for decision-making by government agencies and Brazilian mining companies involved with the development of marine mineral resources and environmental management of the Brazilian Legal Continental Shelf and Adjacent international seabed area.
Planning and execution of paleontology studies and research on a micro and macro scale, as well as in palynology, organic palynology and integrated stratigraphic studies.
Interpretation of air photos, radar images and satellite images for geological mapping.
The Brazilian Government is firmly committed to ensure as top priority the foreign relationship providing conditions to increase the national trade balance and investments in the country as to improve employment and to keep growing the industry based on raw materials production.