Geological information for mineral exploration

A very important part of SGUs responsibility is to survey and document the geology of Sweden – not least with a view to facilitate mineral exploration. Our information on bedrock geology, bedrock quality, Quaternary (superficial) deposits, geochemistry and geophysics provides a foundation for exploration for metal ores, industrial minerals and dimension stone.

Geological information

Sweden’s bedrock is made up of three main components; Precambrian crystalline rocks, the remains of a younger sedimentary rock cover and the Caledonides.

Read more about the bedrock of Sweden (new window)

You can find more geological information by studying the different mapping services listed below.

Fennoscandian ore deposit database

Utdrag ur FODD.png

Map from the Fennoscandian ore deposit database (FODD).

Metal deposits and probable future ore discoveries in the Fennoscandian Shield are gathered in a database produced in a joint project by the geological surveys in Finland, Norway, Russia and Sweden. The database – “Fennoscandian Ore Deposit Database” – is also presented as a map including information about almost 1700 mines and deposits in the region. 

SGUs map viewer

In the Map viewer you can look at different maps directly in your browser. It shows a selection of the geological information that SGU is able to offer. There are several different maps to choose between within the map viewer. You can find links to the different map viewers in "Map viewers" on this page.

To SGU Map viewer (new window)

  • The map viewer Bedrock 1:1 million gives a general view of Sweden’s bedrock
  • The map viewer Drill cores gives information on the cores that are available at SGU
  • The map viewer Ores and minerals shows information that is connected to Sweden’s metal and mineral resources
  • The map viewer Mineral permits gives information on all valid exploration permits registered by the Mining Inspectorate of Sweden
  • The map viewer Mineral deposits of national interest shows areas with mineral deposits that are pointed out to be of national interest
  • The map viewer Magnetic field, gravity and gamma radiation shows different geophysical maps
  • Different geochemical map viewers show results from SGUs chemical surveys. Both background and total levels of copper in quaternary (superficial) deposits are shown.

Products, collections and archives

SGU has produced many reports, maps and booklets that can be useful in mineral exploration. This material can be found in GeoLagret. We also have external reports from mineral exploration done since 1880 to today, gathered in the service called Exploration reports. These reports give information on surveys made in a special area. Site specific information about historic and modern mines can be found through the service called Gruvkartor (mine maps, only available in Swedish).

Our collection of around 17 000 drill cores taken from all around Sweden is located in SGUs mineral resources information office located in Malå, in Västerbotten County, one of the major ore regions in Sweden. There you will also find a lot of analogue material collected in our document archive. At our Malå office you have access to information on about 20 000 boulders and outcrops, represented by specimens and thin sections. Our staff at the mineral resources information office will help you access material useful for mineral exploration.

Search, order or download SGUs products from GeoLagret (new window)

Search in the database Exploration reports (new window)

Open the search service Gruvkartor (new window) 

Read more about the mineral resources information office in Malå

Read more about our drill core collection in Malå

Read more about our collection of ore boulders and thin sections

What are your obligations and rights as a mineral explorer?

Mineral exploration builds knowledge that can of benefit to society or for companies in the future. Exploration should be done in a responsible way with respect to the implications for other activities, culture and the environment.

Read more about the legislation on the Mineral Inspectorate webpage (new window)

Last reviewed 2022-09-21