Introduction:Despites the Three Mile Island and Chernobyl disaster, the countries with no fossil fuels constructing

nuclear power stations presently 125 nuclear power stations are in planning or construction stage. This will result in steady increase in uranium demand over the coming centuries. Research continues apace to develop commercial nuclear fusion of hydrogen isotopes which can be harness for power generation nuclear fission, no matter the type of reactor requires supplies of radioactive isotopes 255U which makes up to 0.5% of natural uranium. If we bring fast breeder reacts on stream install safety procedure that will restore public confidence in nuclear reactor and develop safe solution for nuclear waste storage and disposed. Uranium deposits These are of various types covering metallicferrious deposits. URANIUM A silvery-white metallic chemical element in the actinide series of the periodic table with atomic number 92. It is assigned the chemical symbol U. The uranium establishing six isotopes, the most common of which are U-238 (146 neutrons) and U235 (143 neutrons). Its density is about 70% higher than that of lead, but not as dense as gold or tungsten. It occurs naturally in low concentrations in soil, rock and water, and is commercially extracted from uranium-bearing minerals such as uraninite. Geology of Uranium Deposits

Uranium occurs in a number of different igneous, hydrothermal and sedimentary geological environments.

1. UNCONFIRMITY RELATED DEPOSITS Unconformity-related deposits arise from geological changes occurring close to major unconformities. Below the unconformity, the meta sedimentary rocks which host the mineralization are usually faulted and brecciated. Minerals are uraninite and pitchblende. The main deposits occur in Canada and Australia Unconformity-related deposits constitute a major proportion of Australia's total uranium resources, and much of Australia's total production since 1980 2. SANDSTONE RELATED DEPOSITS Sandstone uranium deposits occur in medium to coarse-grained sandstones deposited in a continental fluvial or marginal marine sedimentary environment. Impermeable shale/mudstone units are interbedded in the sedimentary sequence and often occur immediately above and below the mineralized sandstone. Uranium is precipitated under reducing conditions caused by a variety of reducing agents within the sandstone. The main primary uranium minerals are uraninite and coffinite.


It is overlain by approximately 300 metres of flat-lying sedimentary rocks. and most of its uranium production has been from these deposits. Fluvial transport of detrital uraninite was possible at the time because of the prevailing anoxic atmosphere. These deposits usually have secondary cementing minerals including calcite. copper. Examples are Schinkolobwe deposit (Democratic Republic of the Congo) and Port Radium deposit (Canada) to the narrow pitchblende-filled cracks. Significant resources of this type occur in China. The deposit may contain iron. recently by in situ leach (ISL) mining. BRECIA COMPLEX DEPSOITS The deposit occurs in a hematite-rich granite breccia complex in Craton. 3. breccias and stockworks. silver. uranium. and accounts for the major part of Australia’s uranium resources. SURFICIAL DEPOSITS Surficial uranium deposits are broadly defined as young (Tertiary to Recent) nearsurface uranium concentrations in sediments or soils. from the massive veins of pitchblende. faults and fissures in some of the ore bodies in Europe. Quartz-pebble conglomerate uranium deposits occur in conglomerates deposited in the range 3070-2200 million years ago. These deposits make up only a small proportion of the world's uranium resources. gypsum. Russian Federation and Mexico. The Olympic Dam deposit is one of the world’s largest deposits of uranium. fissures. Uranium occurs in veins or disseminated and is commonly associated with molybdenum and fluorine. gold. QUARTZ PEBBLE CONGLOMERATE DEPOSITS Detrital uranium occurs in some Archaean-early Palaeoproterozoic quartz-pebble conglomerates that unconformably overlie granitic and metamorphic basement. and halite. Major examples are the Elliot Lake deposits in Canada and the Witwatersrand golduranium deposits in South Africa. veins. Kazakhstan. The mining operations in the Elliot 4. pore spaces. ferric oxide. 7.The USA has large resources in sandstone deposits in the Western Cordillera region. Uranium 2 . Canada and Australia. 5. rare earth element and fluorine. VEIN DEPOSITS Vein deposits of uranium are those in which uranium minerals fill cavities such as cracks. The dimensions of the openings have a wide range. VOLCANIC AND CALDERA RELATED DEPOSITS Uranium deposits of this type occur in acid to intermediate volcanic rocks and are related to faults and shear zones within the volcanics. 6. dolomite. Uranium deposits in calcrete are the largest of the surficial deposits.

A number of radioactive localities associated with alkaline igneous rocks. Bannu Basin. The collapse pipes are 30-200 metres in diameter and up to 1000 meters deep. was the latest success. in North and South Dakota. pegmatites. The Siwalik System or its equivalents in time. The principal uranium mineral is pitchblende. PHOSPHORITE DEPOSITS Sedimentary phosphorites of marine origin contain low concentrations of uranium in finegrained apatite.the introduction of sodium (or potassium or calcium) into these rocks. 10. estimates a cumulative production of 970 t U from 1971. COLLAPSE BRECCIA PIPE DEPOSIT These occur in circular. Subsequent exploration led to the discovery of about a dozen small U deposits in the Dera Ghazi Khan District in the early 1970s. Taunsa. Uranium has been adsorbed on to carbonaceous matter and consequently no discrete uranium minerals have formed. in the Serres Basin. and from the Kirthar Range in south Pakistan. discovered in 2000/2001 in this district. Uranium was found in Siwalik sandstone near Rakhi Munh in the Sulaiman Range. Sulaiman Range. 8. Several of these have been mined. and Issa Khel.mineralisation is in finegrained surficial sand and clay. USA and at Mulga Rock. vertical collapse structures filled with coarse fragments and a fine matrix of the penetrated sediments. 3 . LIGNITE DEPOSITS Uranium mineralization occurs in lignite and in clay and sandstone immediately adjacent to the lignite. Mianwali District. METASOMATIC DEPOSITS Metasomatite deposits consist of unevenly disseminated uranium in structurally deformed rocks that were affected by sodium metasomatism. Uranium mineralization is mostly within permeable sandstone breccias within the pipe. 9. and first reports on the discovery of uranium mineralization date back to the year 1959. Jordan and other Middle Eastern countries and these are mined for phosphate 11. USA.01-0. Western Australia. Major examples of this type include Espinharas deposit (Brazil) and the Zheltye Vody deposit (Ukraine). cemented by calcium and magnesium carbonates. URANIUM RESERVES OF PAKISTAN Uranium deposits and notable occurrences are reported from the Dera Ghazi Khan District.. Regional Distribution Of Uranium Producing Siwalik Group This group. The best-known examples of this type are deposits in the Arizona Strip in Arizona. Very large phosphorite deposits occur in the USA (Florida and Idaho). Morocco. 4 600–5 500 m thick.015% U3O8. in central Pakistan. and schists have been discovered in the mountainous northern part of Pakistan. Uranium concentrations are 0. Pakistan’s former U production was essentially concentrated in the Dera Ghazi Khan District. Greece. was almost continuously deposited from Middle Miocene to Lower Pleistocene.

This group has been divided into an Upper. At a cutoff grade of 0. based on Wadia 1961) 1. Nangar Nai. mainly in the Middle Siwalik Dhok Pathan Formation. some 300 km long and dipping to the east. extend continuously along the Himalayan foothills from Assam in the east to southern Kashmir. Middle. is known for at least 1000 km along the sinuous outcrop of this group from 50 km south of Dera Ghazi Khan along the Sulaiman Range. the ore had grades of 0. Regional Geological Settings The Middle Miocene to Lower Pleistocene Siwalik Group is exposed in the Sulaiman Range as a narrow north-south trending belt. Upper Siwalik Division 2. Manchhar System in Sind. a prominent morphological element in the Sulaiman physiographic province in central Pakistan. and Lower division (Moghal 1974. Rakuchur. Dihing Series in Assam.e Siwalik System along the outer Himalayas. Reported deposits include Baghal Chur (or Baghal chor). Rakhi Munh. Rajanpur. They include about a dozen small blanket sandstone-type U deposits confined to a single horizon near the base of the Middle Siwalik Member in a N-S strip to the west of the town of Dera Ghazi Khan. From this point. and Irrawady System in Burma. they continue as a more marine facies to the Arabian Sea Siwalik sediments have been spread differently in different regions i. and further to the east within India SULAIMAN RANGE.respectively. and across the Indus Valley in Pakistan through the Potwar Plateau and Balillu Plains where they turn southwesterly into the Bannu Basin and then south into the Sulaiman Range.03% U. are spread over an outcrop length of more than 160 km along the foothills of this range. Some early mining of these deposits was by conventional open pit and underground methods to depths of 150–200 m and later by ISL techniques and produced an estimated total of some 800 t U. Middle Siwalik Division 3. located to the north of the district. Mekran Series in Baluchistan. Taunsa Most resources of the early discovered deposits are exhausted. and. Lower Siwalik Division 4 . to the Bannu Basin and other areas to the north in Pakistan. DERA GHAZI KHAN The Dera Ghazi Khan District lies in the Sulaiman Range. Numerous radioactive anomalies.1% U as maximum. some with visible U minerals. Intermittent U mineralization in Siwalik sandstones. Kaha Nalo.

brown. much of it consists of hard calcareous concretions but most of the rock is soft. The Upper Siwaliks are generally more argillaceous than the underlying strata. Th e Middle Division is subdivided into the Dhok Pathan Formation and the underlying Nagri Formation. whitish grey sands. Silicifi ed wood debris and tree trunks are abundant throughout the Siwalik sandstones whereas 5 . 1 800–2 400 m thick: Coarse boulder conglomerates. subarkose. micaceous sandstone interbedded with abundant bright red. and purple shales and minor conglom erates. and grit. The sands are soft. 1 500 m thick: Fine-grained. Pyroclastic constituents occur in both formations. Middle Siwalik Division. thick-bedded earthy clays and silts. poorly sorted. Both consist mainly of subgreywacke and lithic arenite but are diff erentiated by their fi ne-grained facies that comprise mudstone and siltstone with rare clay in the Dhok Pathan Formation and clay/siltstone in the Nagri Formation. the matrix is highly variable. subgreywacke) intercalated with minor drab and grey clays and shales as well as some thin conglomerate and hard sandstone lenses. Lower Siwalik Division. friable. a thick. and. in the Dera Ghazi Khan District. and cross-bedded.Figure 1: Pakistan. 1 800–2 400 m thick: Thick. more or less consolidated. massive beds of grey arenites (sandstone. extremely coarse. siliceous-boulder conglomerate caps them. distribution of Tertiary Siwalik Group sediments and location of the Baghal Chur and Qabul Khel U deposits (after Moghal 2001) Upper Siwalik Division.

Geological Setting Baghal Chur is situated in the asymmetrical Baghal Chur syncline. termed Baghal Chur Sand. in oxidized and non-oxidized greywacke in which schist fragments. about 60–75 m thick. the wood and logs are almost entirely limonitized to soft . heulandite) that occurs as discrete diagenetic crystals in pore cavities. coat grains. and plant remains. impregnate the interstices between clasts. increase sharply near the western anticline. mineralization is out of equilibrium Non-oxidized mineralization: Pitchblende and coffinite are the principal U minerals in the non-oxidized zone. It is a light grey. poorly to well sorted. Th e deposit was mined from 1971 to 1999 by conventional methods and is depleted. elongated to amoeba shape. biotite. In the Baghal Chur area. feldspars (10– 25% plagioclase. microcline. Middle Siwalik Division in which U mineralization is confined to an NE-SW-striking and 5–10° SE dipping arenite horizon. shows gentle and uniform 5–10° easterly dips which. and clay pellets. Lithic rock fragments of magmatic and metamorphic provenance are common and include chips of occasionally pyritiferous slate and carbonaceous schists. and friable subarkose or subgreywacke. In both environments. In addition. Major constituents are quartz. martite. BAGHAL CHUR The blanket sandstone-type Baghal Chur deposit lies about 40 km NNW of Dera Ghazi Khan. that hosts all U lodes. Ore bodies are of strata peneconcordant. Appreciable uranium content is also bound in zeolite (clinoptilolite. Some rock fragments may represent diagenetically altered volcanic tuff. Shape and Dimension of Deposits The deposit consists of a group of overlapping ore bodies distributed from surface to depths of 150–200 m. The Baghal Chur Sand was deposited primarily as sheets by southerly flowing rivers. These minerals.05% U. muscovite. Host rocks are fluvial lacustrine sediments of the Dhok Pathan Formation. primarily magnetite. or on both sides 5–10 mm thick black. pebbles. and locally also associate with crossbeds of heavy minerals. clay minerals. its eastern (Zinda Pir) flank dips 30–50° W while the major portion of the western limb. In the latter case. Shale beds occur below (Bogo Shale) and locally above (Vidor Shale) the sands. respectively. biotite and feldspar predominate. bands of yellow U minerals about 1 cm thick follow above or below. heavy mineral bands and cross beds. Original resources are not published but are assumed to have been on the order of a few hundred tonnes U at grades of 0. Mineralization Uranium(-vanadium) mineralization occurs above and below the groundwater table. and biotite. hematite. in the form of a greenish-yellow amorphous powder. Oxidized mineralization: Tyuyamunite is the principal U mineral but some carnotite occurs occasionally. 6 . however. earthy ochre.leaf remnants occur preferentially in the shales. soft . uranium is adsorbed by goethite. commonly mediumto fine grained. orthoclase).

Baghal Chur area. Middle Siwalik Division. named aft er a small nearby village. are hampered by the shape of the ore body. high calcium content in water. high dip of strata. Grades are about 0. A number of small ore bodies were explored in the early 1980s. Geological Setting The Qabul Khel deposit is located in the plunging. NW-SE cross-sections illustrating a the general litho-stratigraphic position of the U-bearing Baghal Chur Sand. Conventional and ISL mining. Eagle Hill. poorly cemented rocks. poor solution confinement. An experimental underground mining operation was carried out initially but ISL mining was finally adopted and a semi-commercial scale ISL operation began in mid-1995 on one ore body. south of the Kurram River.Figure 2: Dera Ghazi Khan U district. This basin consists of folded molasse of the Siwalik Group. Ore bodies are hosted by the Dhok Pathan 7 . NW PAKISTAN The Bannu Basin is located in the North-West Frontier Province of Pakistan. respectively. an eastern marginal hill range of the basin. QABUL KHEL Qabul Khel (Kubul Khel). It contains the small Qabul Khel. and b the distribution of U lenses in the Baghal Chur Sand (after Moghal 1974) BANU BASIN SURGHAR RANGE. Dhok Pathan Formation. and Shanawah sandstone U deposits in the Surghar Range. southern part of the Surghar anticline at the eastern margin of the structural Bannu Basin.05% U. U showings hosted by Middle Siwalik molasse also occur intermittently over a strike length of 30 km between Kundal and Baggi Qammar in the Khisor Range. is located in the southern Surghar Range. influx of a high quantity of water. structural complications. a continuation of the Surghar Range. and a water table cover of only 3 m. absence of bottom shale at places..

between 20 and 45° SW. and clay minerals. The sandstones are grey. it has a NW-SE length of some 200 m.053% U. The Dhok Pathan Formation is a cyclic alternating sand-shale sequence that is variably inclined. and joints in the Qabul Khel area that are filled with sand and are partly calcified but only above the water table. NE-SW cross-sections along drill fences 0 (a) and 10 (b) showing the irregular shape of the main ore body in Qabul Khel Sandstone and its relationship to the Qabul Khel Shale Horizon and the water table (after a Moghal 2001. b Mansoor et al. and the shales dull brown and grey. Th e shales are silty and often contain variable amounts of volcanic material in the form of bentonite and bedded ash with glass shards. Qabul Khel deposit. The ore follows. 8 . quartz. in the Qabul Khel area. and averages 0. persists over a depth interval from 68 to 118 m below the surface. mica. Brittle tectonism resulted in numerous strata discordant and some intraformational faults.5 m. the sandstone beds are 40–60 m and the intercalated shales 10–15 m thick. fractures. 2002) Mineralization Coffinite and pitchblende are the principal U minerals in the unoxidized environment below the water table. they occur as pore fillings whereas pitchblende also occurs as micro fine globules. The ore is poorly cemented. in NW-SE direction. Figure 3: Bannu Basin. The ore minerals are contained in an assemblage of predominant amphibole. Uranophane is typical for the oxidized zone. largely unconsolidated. soft and friable.Formation that forms the upper unit of the Middle Siwalik Division. a thickness commonly from 2 to 15 m averaging 6. calcite. and fragile Shape and Dimensions of Deposits The ore body is of irregular tape-like configuration. At the deposit. the trace of the water table at the contact of the Qabul Khel Sandstone with underlying\ shale.

KPK: U mineralizationextends over a strike length of 2 km. It remain largely unresolved problem. phurcalite. Partly calcified and non-calcified sandstones that contain abundant organic matter and more or less devitrified volcanic material host the U mineralization. south Pakistan: U mineralization occurs discontinuously over a strike length of 25 km in sandstone of the Lower Manchar Formation in the Karunuk-Sehwan. parallel to the present day water table. The problem arises because radioactive waste convert be neutralized.Most of the ore is concentrated along the interface of the sandstone with the underlying shale. Kallar Kahar. Carnotite occurs in the oxidized zone above the water table whereas pitchblende prevails below the water table. They are greatly karedly. Shanawah near Karak.04% U. but depths and strike continuity remain to be established. curite. Grades average 0. Radioactive water deposal Now a day this is a subject of deabte both naturally and internationally. north Pakistan: A vein system with U concentrations cutting across the Swat granitic gneiss complex occurs in the high mountains at Maraghzar area in the Swat region. Uraniferous lenses range from 200 to 1 000 m in length.02 to 4% U. U minerals include carnotite. Salt Range. Other chemicals waste or deposal. The general public because their harmful indeed some time poisonous effects are invisible and cannot be detected by human scene. Rehman Dhora (Aamri). central-north Pakistan: Uranium occurs in sandstone of the Middle-Late Miocene Kamlial Formation near Kallar Kahar in the Salt Range. some 120 km SW of Islamabad. Samples yield from 0. and Wahi Pandi areas. Maraghzar Area. The formation consists of purple-grey and brick red sandstones interbedded with purple shales. but at places the ore forms another limb penetrating strata discordant into the sandstone for as much as 120 m. The average thickness is as much as 17 m and averages 10 m. Minor U occurrences are reported from various parts of Pakistan including the following sites: Kirthar Range. Sind Province. and saleeite.. 9 .

Sign up to vote on this title
UsefulNot useful