Atomic Minerals Directorate for Exploration and Research

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Last Updated: September 1, 2003
Other Name: AMD
Location: Hyderabad, India
Subordinate To: Department of Atomic Energy (DAE)
Size: Unknown
Facility Status: Operational

Uranium exploration in India began in 1949 in the Singhbhum district of Bihar under the Rare Mineral Survey Unit of the Ministry of Natural Resources and Scientific Research. That same year, the survey unit was renamed the Raw Materials Division, which in 1958 was again renamed the Atomic Minerals Division. In 1998, the unit received its current name: the Atomic Minerals Directorate for Exploration and Research (AMD). The AMD is headquartered in Hyderabad and has seven regional headquarters in New Delhi, Bangalore, Tatanagar, Shillong, Nagpur, and Jaipur. The AMD is responsible for exploration and research relating to atomic minerals required for India's nuclear program. The AMD's responsibility of identifying nuclear raw materials (uranium, thorium, tantalum, beryllium, zirconium, lithium, yttrium, and rare earth minerals) is the first step in India's nuclear fuel cycle. In order to fulfill this task, the AMD's charter of duties includes exploration and evaluation of atomic minerals as declared by the Atomic Energy Act, research and development in the field of instrumentation and laboratory techniques, and liaison and collaboration at the national and international fields. Once sites with nuclear raw materials are discovered by the AMD's program of surveys (which includes prospecting and exploratory drilling), the sites are handed over to one of two DAE parastatals, either Uranium Corporation of India Limited (UCIL) or India Rare Earths Limited (IREL). The material found determines which entity will take over the site.

According to the DAE's Annual Report 2000-2001, AMD conducted the following activities during fiscal year 2000-2001:

  • AMD established ore grade mineralization continuity at Gogi (Karnataka) and Rohil-Ghateshwar (Rajasthan). Widespread uranium mineralization associated with Gulcheru quartzite was located along the Gandi-Kannampalle tract (located in the Cuddapah district of Andhra Pradesh).
  • Additional uranium resources were estimated in Wahkyn (Meghalaya) and Koppunuru (Andhra Pradesh). Further reserves of xenotime bearing polymineralic concentrate and columbite-tantalite were estimated in parts of Orissa and Gujarat.
  • The directorate conducted airborne Gamma Ray Spectrometric and Aeromagnetic surveys over 19,000-line km in parts of Madhya Pradesh and Orissa.

Sources:
[1] DAE (Government of India), "Annual Report 2000-2001," Executive Summary available at www.dae.gov.in.
[2] Atomic Minerals Directorate for Exploration and Research (AMD), www.dae.gov.in.

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