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Digital Atlas

Geological Atlas of the Western Canada Sedimentary Basin

We Want You to Help us Build the Next Atlas!

Digital Atlas 'Proof of Concept' Web Map  |  GeoCanada 2010 Digital Atlas Presentation

That's right folks; the CSPG is working to create an on-line digital version of the Geological Atlas of the Western Canada Sedimentary Basin, and our vision for this project is huge.

In fact, according to the Geological Survey of Canada, the atlas is still used by industry resource explorers, academics and students, environmental analysts, and government scientists and planners as a reference tool. Originally published in 1994 by the CSPG and Alberta Research Council, this reference book has long been unavailable in bookstores.

The atlas, though out of print, is still accessible to any internet user. The AGS has the text and (low resolution) figures on their website for the public's use (Geological Atlas of the Western Canada Sedimentary Basin). This was a wonderful advancement as internet browsers can peruse the atlas with greater ease, allowing one to use the search engine to look up key words. Also, anyone who has seen the book would agree with me when I say that it would be slightly cumbersome to bring to and from the office.

However, we believe that the atlas can be improved. The Digital Atlas Committee, made up of members from the industry, government, and education sectors, wants to create an atlas that will take advantage of the latest internet technology and captures new ideas and modified geologic models that have developed since the last edition of the atlas.

Some of the initial functionality we hope to build into this new version includes:

  • Geo-referenced high-resolution maps;
  • The ability to view stratigraphic intervals as spatially referenced layers, with the ability to turn layers on or off;
  • The ability to download maps as ArcGIS shape files or PDFs;
  • High-resolution cross-sections and schematics, linked to the appropriate layers;
  • Images of type-well logs;
  • Links to lexicon descriptions;
  • And the ability to download basic information for the control wells.

Other features we hope to provide on this site include:

  • Descriptions of historic pools for use as analogues;
  • Cross-sections linked to public regional seismic lines illustrating the interpretation;
  • Links to current research groups, consortiums, and recent literature on specified topics;
  • Links to commercial vendors for more detailed data, reports, etc.;
  • Links to depositional environment models and modern-day analogs;
  • Links to topographic maps and remote sensing data;
  • And search of publications based on map links to AAPG, CSPG, GSW, etc.

This is the vision of the Digital Atlas Committee – but this is also an evolving product and we are still in the early stages. The items listed above are only some of the possibilities that are available.

We want to know what you think and what other ideas or additional functions should be included. Please contact us with any thoughts or suggestions you might have.

For more information, please contact:

Ben McKenzie, Digital Atlas Committee Chair
(403) 993-4496