Mercury is especially useful in geochemical prospecting because of its migration and dispersion to considerable distances from ore, and its subsequent stability in the deposit. At Idrija (Yugoslavia), Hg contents of 8-10 ppm mark the rather pronounced threshold between an inner dispersion aureole and a regional aureole, the latter being some 100 meters across. Secondary aureoles of tectonic origin make possible the discovery of blind ore bodies 100 m below the surface, beneath a barren thrust plate. Contamination from the smelting plant is negligible at distances exceeding one kilometer.

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