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Mineral Exploration Completed at Dobrovolnoye Uranium Deposit in Zverinogolovsky District, Kurgan Region
Pursuant to Order of the Russian Government No. 1131-r published on May 30, 2017, Dalur, JSC (managed by ARMZ Uranium Holding Co. / Mining Division of Rosatom State Atomic Energy Corporation) was granted the right to use the Dobrovolnoye subsoil plot of federal importance for the exploration and extraction of uranium. The exploration was commenced in November 2019 by RUSBURMASH, JSC (a specialized company within ARMZ Uranium Holding Co.) as set out in the license issued by the Federal Agency for Subsoil Use.
In total, they have drilled 218 exploratory wells, or 117,093 linear meters, at the deposit to extract and study samples of overlying source rocks (core). «The methods of drilling and further liquidation plugging we apply cause no damage to the integrity of the original geological massif and minimize the impact on the environment. Once the work is completed, the wells will be dismantled and revegetation will take place,» says Dinis Ezhurov, Director General of RUSBURMASH, JSC. Upon exploration, they identified the ore body boundaries and uranium content and described the ores and the ore-hosting rocks to confirm the industrial value of the Dobrovolnoye deposit and the efficiency and environmental safety of the ISL method to be used for mining. «The Dobrovolnoye deposit is comparable in size to the Dalmatovskoye deposit that we have been developing since 1984. That is to say, the mining operations in the Zverinogolovsky District will create more than 300 new jobs and provide strategic metal supplies for the nuclear industry for several decades. This is a varved deposit, with the total length of the uranium mineralization of about 18 km,» said Nikolay Poponin, Director General of Dalur, JSC. We would like to remind that hydrogeological studies were completed at the Dobrovolnoye deposit in September 2020, which helped to explore the filtration properties of the ore-hosting strata and the salt composition of the natural groundwater. Test surveys allowed to pinpoint the hydrodynamic parameters of the ore occurrences and develop a hydrogeological model of the deposit. The studies proved once again that the ore body was isolated from the overlying aquifers, although this had been previously confirmed by Hydrogeological Expedition No. 30, FSBI Gidrospetsgeologiya.
Dalur, JSC is currently starting to equip a pilot ISL site at the Dobrovolnoye deposit, with favorable opinion No. 45-1-1-3-001048-2020 obtained from Glavgosexpertiza of Russia for the design documentation and the results of the engineering surveys related to the work. However, no pilot operations will be run in the area of the Tobol River which is typically inundated in the flooding season.
In 2018-2019, the local residents held public hearings and approved the plans of Dalur, JSC for the development of the Dobrovolnoye deposit.