Uranium in Pacific Deep-Sea Sediments and Manganese Nodules

Helmar Kunzendorf, W. L. Pluger, G. H. Friedrich

    Research output: Contribution to journalJournal articleResearchpeer-review


    A total of 1344 manganese nodules and 187 pelagic sediments from 9 areas in the North and the South Pacific were analyzed for U by the delayed-neutron counting technique. A strong positive correlation between U and Fe in nodules and sediments suggests a co-precipitative removal from sea water into the Fe-rich ferromanganese mineral phase δ -MnO2. Enrichment of U and Fe in nodules from the northwestern slopes of two submarine hills (U between 6 and 9 ppm) in the equatorial nodule belt is thought to be caused by directional bottom water flow creating elevated oxygenized conditions in areas opposed to the flow. Economically important nodule deposits from the nodule belt and the Peru Basin have generally low U contents, between 3 and 5 ppm. Insignificant resources of U of about 4 × 105 in the Pacific manganese nodules are estimated.
    Original languageEnglish
    JournalJournal of Geochemical Exploration
    Issue number1-3
    Pages (from-to)147-162
    Publication statusPublished - 1983


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