Mankind has reached such a stage of development that any solution to the crisis, whether economic or social, requires the latest achievements of science and the wide-spread introduction of innovations into practice. Indeed, the experience of the most developed countries in the world today proves that it is advisable to rely on science and innovation in the stages of development.
In this sense, it is acknowledged that our country pays special attention to the development of our national economy in an innovative way. In particular, in the mining and metallurgical industry, ensuring the integration of science and industry, strengthening the innovative approach accelerates the development of the industry.
The Navoi Mining and Metallurgical Plant has adopted a Program of Innovative Development which includes 105 innovative projects aimed at increasing the efficiency of mining and processing of precious metals such as gold and uranium by 2026, reducing the production costs and creating sufficient conditions for export expansion According to estimates, the implementation of the these projects will bring economic benefits of 1 trillion 267 billion soums.
It should be noted that qualified specialists are being engaged in the scientific and practical work in such areas as geology and prospecting, mining, gold and uranium production, metallurgy and mechanical engineering, transport, energy, environmental protection, and social sphere. As a result, today the plant is rapidly moving towards innovative development, introduction of new technologies. In 2019, 58 projects worth 24.4 billion soums were implemented under the Program of Innovative Development, and this year 63 projects worth 35.4 billion soums are being implemented.
For example, in collaboration with scientists from the Nuclear Physics Institute of the Academy of Sciences of the Republic of Uzbekistan the gammaactivated analysis for detection of non-ferrous metals in ore in the geological prospecting is implemented. This practical work on technological control devices for the mining industry, which allows us to identify rocks, i. e gold and silver in the ore, will continue in the future.
The Central Gamma-Activated Analysis Laboratory of the Muruntau deposit is one of the main units that assist in the geological prospecting of the plant. Its uniqueness is that in the laboratory the analysis of electrons is carried out by means of gamma rays inhibited in a linear accelerator. Over the past period, the laboratory has undergone some changes, modern equipment has been installed, new research methods have been introduced. Another important aspect is that the process of rapid gamma-activated analysis of gold in geological samples in the laboratory is improving year by year. This laboratory, in the language of geologists, serves as their “eye.”.
The level of accuracy must be very high when analyzing samples taken from gold deposits. In the Central Research Laboratory of the plant, the analysis of rocks using chemical elements is available in advance. But conducting large-scale analyses requires speed. In this regard, the Central Gamma-Activated Analysis Laboratory, equipped with innovative technologies, is playing a key role.
Effective development of the riches hidden in the Kyzylkum desert, first of all, serves the interests of this country. In the laboratory, 0.5 kg of gold in a special container is detected in a very short time, i. e in the range of 17-19 seconds. In accelerators, the flow of electrons through the tube hits the tungsten target at the fastest light speed and activates the gold atomic nuclei, emitting gamma rays with high absorption properties. Given the complexity of the central gamma-activated analysis laboratory, the plant’s management is trying to train young specialists and expand their knowledge, along with the installation of unique equipment and devices.
Currently, more than 3,500 samples are analyzed per day on one accelerator. The laboratory analyzes samples not only from the fields of the plant, i. e in Navoi, Zaraf-shan, Uchkuduk, Zarmitan, Marjanbulak, but also for geological prospecting expeditions under the State Committee for Geology and Mineral Resources of the Republic of Uzbekistan. Standard samples are widely used for analytical control in the analysis pro-cess.
In recent years, the annual rate of laboratory analysis is up to 1.3 million samples. This year, the laboratory plans to analyze 1.5 million samples. To this end, laboratory equipment will be modernized and improved in the framework of new innovative pro-jects.
It should be noted that at present, no physics laboratory in the world has the capacity to conduct large-scale and rapid analysis as the Central Gamma-Activated Anal-ysis Laboratory. That is the reason for its uniqueness. By the way, in modern laboratories, which can be found in some of the most prestigious foreign companies, the volume of analysis of subsurface rock is much smaller.
Today, the laboratory is gradually being equipped with modern equipment and going through technical reequipment. In 2019, the measurement and control unit was modernized. Technological downtime has been eliminated due to the upgrade of the accelerator cooling system.
The laboratory employs talented local specialists in the fields of nuclear physics, electronics and mechanics. Thanks to their dedication and research, the level of detection of gold-bearing ores is improving. In our country, great attention is being paid to the development of the fundamental basis of hetero lasers of optoelectronic devices, photo-diodes, phototransistors and photo-thyristors that receive optical light from various semiconductor nano-heterostructures and nano-structures, converting infrared light into light in the visibility range.
In the future, identification of containers, i. e special containers for sampling, is being carried out to reduce manual labor and analyze operational data. As a result, each container is provided with a special QR code and transferred to a computer-programmed control. Thus, the rapid penetration of digital technologies into the system will significantly increase the quality of work. The rate of detection of precious metals in ores increases. This will pave the way for further high-quality geological prospecting and increase of precious metals for the state treasury.
Deputy Head of the Center for Introduction of Innovative Technologies, NMMP