Abstract

The chemical composition of glacial till is a product of parent rocks, glacial and post-glacial processes and reflects the geogenic variation of chemical elements. Contrasting chemical composition of rock types together with spatial variation in distribution patterns of metals in the fine fraction of till in southeastern Sweden assists in the identification of the signatures reflecting parent rocks in glacial till samples. The spatial patterns of Cu, Co, Ni, Pb, V and Zn in 1411 till samples were presented by point symbol maps, followed by the extraction of multi-element associations by employing principal component analysis (PCA) and interactive high-dimensional visualization. The most influential multi-element spatial patterns in till data could be separated using either the numerical (PCA) or the visual approach. However, more information was extracted by combining the two techniques. In addition, interactive visualization provided an objective presentation of complex information in sparse lithogeochemical data. The study resulted in new knowledge about the natural variation of the levels of six elements in till, and a graphical presentation to convey information about and compare multi-element geochemical signatures.

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