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Helium in Jharkhand State of India.

Helium in Jharkhand State of India.

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Rocks of Jharkhand State in India which are mineral rich can also be used for trapping Helium deposit. In Jharkhand helium has been reported in the gases of different thermal springs of Hazaribag district.
Rocks of Jharkhand State in India which are mineral rich can also be used for trapping Helium deposit. In Jharkhand helium has been reported in the gases of different thermal springs of Hazaribag district.

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Categories:Types, Research, Science
Published by: Dr. Nitish Priyadarshi on Nov 19, 2011
Copyright:Attribution Non-commercial

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11/19/2011

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Possibilities of helium deposit in Jharkhand State of India.
Assessment of helium reservoir may be undertaken in the Jharkhand state.
ByDr. Nitish Priyadarshi.
Rocks of Jharkhand State in India which are mineral rich can also be used for trappingHelium deposit. In Jharkhand helium has been reported in the gases of different thermalsprings of Hazaribag district.In Jharkhand, concentration of helium is highest in thermal gases of Surajkund (3.63mole %) followed by Charhi (3.38 mole %), Duari (2.95 mole%), Barkagaon (0.29 mole%)and Badam (0.09 mole %). Surajkund hot spring (also called Surya Kund) is anatural hot spring in Belkapi gram panchayat of Barkatha community development block in Barhi subdivision of Hazaribag district in the Indian state of Jharkhand.Mineral radioactivity plays an important role in the natural occurrence of helium. Heliumis an end product of radioactive decay. Helium is also known from the damp of manycoal mines. The release of helium from rocks/minerals is greatly promoted by leachingwith H
2
, CH
4
and its homologues. In this area high helium seems to have originated fromthe combination of the above processes.According to other report, two well-known groups of thermal springs at Bakreswar (WestBengal) and Tantloi (Jharkhand) give-off substantial quantities of helium-bearing naturalgases as bubbling emanations. These two thermal spring sites are located 25 km fromeach other and about 250 km from Kolkata. In Tantloi the presence of helium in gases of thermal spring is 1.26 vol. %.Helium is used for many purposes that require some of its unique properties, such as itslow boiling point, low density, low solubility, high thermal conductivity, or inertness. Of the 2008 world helium total production of about 32 million kg (193 million standardcubic meters) helium per year, the largest use (about 22% of the total in 2008) is incryogenic applications, most of which involves cooling the superconducting magnets in
 
medical MRI scanners.Helium is extracted in Poland, Russia, China, Algeria, Canada and the Netherlands. Theaverage concentration of helium in fields of these countries ranges between 0.18and 0.9 vol%. Since such favourable natural gas deposits are not found in India, itseems logical to look for them in unconventional terrestrial sources such asthermal spring emanations and monazite sands. A thermal spring is the manifestation of extremity of an ascending hot fluid column, which pierces successive layers of the
 
lithosphere and comes forth through the vents. It issues along fractures and fissures,which are invariably linked with deep-seated faults in well-defined zonesof mechanical weakness. There are nearly three hundred thermal springs scatteredall over India. Preliminary estimation performed by Variable Energy CyclotronCentre (VECC), Department of Atomic Energy (DAE) at Bakreswar, DistrictBirbhum, West Bengal reveals that quite a number of thermal springs emit naturalgases containing helium in significant measure. Three distinct belts of thermal springs sofar identified in India by the Geological Survey of India are: (1) Eastern India – Jharkhand, Assam and Orissa; (2) West coast of India – Ratnagiri, Thane,Colaba and Surat, and (3) Himalayan Belt – Jamunotri (Uttaranchal), Gangotriand Monikaran (Kullu Valley, Himachal Pradesh).Earlier, radon, helium and uranium measurements have been carried out in hot water springs in the Parbati and Beas valleys of Himachal Pradesh in India. Most of these hotsprings are known as famous pilgrimage centers. The activity of dissolved radon in theliquid phase is found to vary widely, by an order of magnitude, between 10 and 750 BqL−1, whereas, the dissolved helium content in these thermal springs varies between 10and 100 ppm. The uranium contents are low and vary from <0.01 to 5 μg L−1. Themeasured values of radon, helium and uranium are possibly controlled by structuralgeology, namely the presence of pervious fault systems, and by the lithology of theleached host rocks.Helium is found in large amounts in minerals of uranium and thorium,including cleveite, pitchblende, carnotite and monazite, because they emit alpha particles(helium nuclei, He
2+
) to which electrons immediately combine as soon as the particle isstopped by the rock. In this way an estimated 3000 metric tons of helium are generated per year throughout the lithosphere. In the Earth's crust, the concentration of helium is 8 parts per billion. In seawater, the concentration is only 4 parts per trillion. There are alsosmall amounts in mineral springs, volcanic gas, and meteoric iron. Because helium istrapped in the subsurface under conditions that also trap natural gas, the greatest naturalconcentrations of helium on the planet are found in natural gas, from which mostcommercial helium is extracted.We believe that exploitation of the existing natural gas reserves in India couldmeet the requirement for domestic consumption of Grade-A helium. This, in turn,would ensure a reliable supply of helium for sustainable development and application of cryogenic technology. Taking into account the growing demand of cryogenic technologyin our country, helium concentration assessment of helium reservoir may be undertakenin the Jharkhand state to see if helium can be mined. A detail exploration is needed toimprove the database for assessing and evaluating the helium potential in JharkhandState. Geological Survey of India along with state government and other nationalagencies will have to play a key role.Reference:

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