Open Access

Aeromagnetic data analysis for the identification of concealed uranium deposits: a case history from Singhbhum uranium province, India

Earth, Planets and Space200658:BF03352616

Received: 23 January 2006

Accepted: 1 May 2006

Published: 16 September 2006


Aeromagnetic data over a part of the Singhbhum uranium province, India, within the framework of ‘Operation Hard Rock’ have been analyzed. The aeromagnetic anomaly map, its analytic signal amplitude, the Euler solutions and apparent susceptibility map helped in identifying the nature and depth of the magnetic sources in the study region. The Singhbhum Shear Zone is clearly delineated. The location of the mined uranium deposits coincide with the shallow magnetic sources. The present study also identified distinctive magnetic sources between the Dalma Volcanics and the Chotanagpur Granitic Gneissic Complex that suggest the presence of a sub-surface shear. The magnetic sources in this newly identified shear zone lie at a depth of 200 m and depict a similar magnetic signature and susceptibility as those of the Singhbhum Shear Zone where uranium is being mined. This shear could be the subsurface contact between high-grade metamorphic rocks (amphibolite facies) to the north and the greenschist facies low-grade metamorphics to the south. This shear zone, also characterized by radiometric anomalies, possibly indicates a zone of concealed uranium deposit that can be explored in the future. The present analysis shows the importance of aeromagnetic surveys and its utility in exploration for concealed mineral deposits.

Key words

Magnetic anomalies tectonics magnetite potential field analytic signal Euler deconvolution