Latest News:  
Beijing   Sunny/Overcast    28 / 16 ℃  City Forecast

Home>>Science

China eyes developing deep-sea mining tech by 2030

By Tuo Yannan, Wang Qian (China Daily)

13:30, May 29, 2012

BEIJING, May 29 (Xinhuanet) -- Commercial deep-sea mining by China of polymetallic nodules that contain copper, nickel and cobalt among other key minerals, can begin as early as 2030, according to the former head of the State Oceanic Administration.

"With the improvement in deep-sea technology, metal resources under the ocean can be explored and mined within 20 years," said Sun Zhihui.

Last year, China was among the first group of countries approved by the International Seabed Authority to look for polymetallic sulphide deposits, a recently discovered mineral source, in the Southwest Indian Ridge, a tectonic plate boundary on the bed of the Indian Ocean, he said, adding the country is applying to explore for cobalt in a new area in the Pacific Ocean.

Sun said many countries are developing technologies for commercial mining, but a low-cost method of mining polymetallic nodules has not been found yet.

China has explored more than 80,000 square kilometers of the floor of the Pacific and Indian oceans, Sun said.

Xiang Jianhai, researcher at the Institute of Oceanology under the Chinese Academy of Sciences, said: "When we can carry out commercial mining depends on technological development, financial support and the price of key minerals on the market."

Xiang added that current exploration, such as that carried out by China's manned deep-sea vessel Jiaolong, will provide the technology and geological information for future mining.

He added the extent of the country's deep-sea exploration was catching up with that of advanced countries. Scientists estimate that about 480 million to 13.5 billion tons of polymetallic nodules can be commercially mined, Science and Technology Daily reported.

Polymetallic nodules are rock concretions, mostly about the size of a potato, on the seabed containing metals such as cobalt, manganese, iron, nickel and aluminum, which have huge economic potential.


【1】 【2】

Email|Print|Comments(Editor:马茜、姚春)

Leave your comment0 comments

  1. Name

  

Selections for you


  1. Hollywood stuntmen stage trick cycling performance

  2. Miss Bikini International Henan Division crowned

  3. Charm of Chinese gown

  4. Infantrymen in contest

Most Popular

Opinions

  1. Construction boom could hinder economic growth
  2. Much-needed cooling awaits China
  3. Why is Washington so scared of Confucius?
  4. Chance to peacefuly resolve Iranian nuclear issue
  5. What is the US' aim behind arms sales to Taiwan?
  6. Investment-driven growth no longer a viable option
  7. Summit can't stop NATO from being marginalized
  8. Easing liquidity not a cure-all
  9. As Beijing remains mum, trade relationships suffer
  10. Intentions behind Japanese right-wingers’ collusion with ‘World Uyghur Congress’

What's happening in China

More men say 'I do' to mail-order Vietnamese women

  1. Construction stocks soar on policy move
  2. Foreigners provided easier residence registration
  3. Police detain 2 after deadly kindergarten fire
  4. Credit rating stays despite slowdown
  5. Ancient shipwrecks unearthed in waterway

China Features

  1. Maritime spat between China and DPRK
  2. The 24 solar terms
  3. High ticket prices, unaffordable landscapes
  4. Huangyan tensions
  5. 2012 Russia-China joint naval exercise

PD Online Data

  1. Spring Festival
  2. Chinese ethnic odyssey
  3. Yangge in Shaanxi
  4. Gaoqiao in Northern China
  5. The drum dance in Ansai