Tummalapalle in Cuddapah Basin: Uranium resources in India: Andhra Pradesh to contribute 25 per cent of India's uranium needs
Syed Akbar Hyderabad, May 29: With exploration in new areas indicating the presence of uranium resources, Andhra Pradesh is poised to become a major uranium hub, contributing almost 25 per cent of nuclear fuel for India's future nuclear energy needs. Tummalapalle and adjoining areas in Cuddapah Super basin may well emerge as one of the major uranium provinces in the world as almost a dozen new places with vast uranium resources have been identified there, according to a former senior official of the city-based Atomic Minerals Directorate. Of the six priority areas identified in the country for uranium exploration, three fall within the State. They are Tummalapalle in Cuddapah Super basin, Srisailam sub-basin and Bhima basin. Ranga Reddy and Mahbubnagar districts fall under Bhima basin which extends to over 5,200 sq km. If uranium resources found in new areas are to be included, Andhra Pradesh will account for almost 25 per cent of total uranium resources in the country. It is estimated that as much as five lakh tonnes of uranium resources is hidden in Cuddapah super basin. Uranium mineralisation in Vempalle extends over 160 km belt from Maddimadugu to Chelumpalli and this area may soon turn into a potential zone for uranium exploitation. As many as 10 new blocks have been identified within a radius of 30 km around Tummalapalle. "Five to eight years from now, AMD will establish substantial resources of uranium, mainly in Cuddapah basin, which will cater the requirements of our country's nuclear power programme," the official pointed out. A number of mines may be opened in Cuddapah-Vempalle belt in near future to produce uranium. The AMD teams have thus far identified three types of uranium mineralisation in Cuddapah basin. Investigations in Srisailam and Palnadu sub-basins have resulted in establishing four low grade uranium deposits at Lambapur, Peddaguttu, Chitrial and Koppunuru. Further explorations are being planned in these areas.