Abstract

The effectiveness of traditional methods of searching for kimberlite pipes in the Arkhangelsk diamondiferous province (in the subarctic zone of Russia) has decreased greatly in recent years, and new methods of kimberlite exploration must therefore be developed. This study discusses new patterns of the distribution of natural radioactive isotopes within the Arkhangelsk diamondiferous province (Zolotitskoe kimberlite field), and the uranium isotopes 234U and 238U in particular. A variety of isotope radiogeochemical studies has shown that the kimberlite pipes are characterized by local radioisotope anomalies, on the surface and in exploration drill cores. These irregularities are clearly manifested in the formation of a non-equilibrium anomalous uranium isotope composition in the surrounding rocks and groundwater of the near-contact zone of the pipes. These uranium isotopes can be used to explore for kimberlites in other areas with similar complex landscape–geology and climate conditions of the subarctic zone.

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