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NMDC and IIT Kharagpur sign MoU for drone-based exploration – International Mining

The National Mineral Development Corporation Ltd (NMDC), India’s largest iron ore producer and a CPSE under the Ministry of Steel, has signed an MoU with IIT Kharagpur for drone-based mineral exploration.
NMDC has been exploring for minerals for six decades including copper, phosphate rock, limestone, magnesite, diamond, tungsten and mineral sands amongst others from reconnaissance G4 level to the detailed G1 Level of UNFC.
The MoU for ‘Drone-Based Mineral Exploration’ was signed on a virtual platform which attended by Shri Sumit Deb, CMD; Shri Amitava Mukherjee, Director (Finance); Shri Somnath Nandi, Director (Technical); Shri DK Mohanty, Director (Production) from NMDC and professors from IIT Kharagpur.
The said MoU was signed on behalf of NMDC by Shri DK Mohanty, Director (Production), and on behalf of IIT Kharagpur by Professor SP Sharma, HoD, Department of Geology & Geophysics, and Professor Samir K Pal, HoD, Department of Mining Engineering.
Shri Sumit Deb, CMD, NMDC said, “NMDC would be the first CPSE in India to conduct drone-based geophysical surveys and hyperspectral studies for mineral exploration in the country. NMDC’s tie-up with IIT-Kharagpur will open a new chapter and set a benchmark in the field of mineral exploration for the nation.”
NMDC is conducting exploration for various minerals in the state of Madhya Pradesh and also in the Beloda-Belmundi block in Chhattisgarh for diamonds. NMDC is also the first CPSE to use space geophysics in the Central Indian Diamond Province and the first to use online monitoring of exploration of data on the BHUVAN platform. NMDC says it is increasingly relying on technological innovation and digitalisation of its database related to exploration and mining.
With the launch of a policy on drones, the Government has taken the first step to regulate and monitor drone usage and operations in India which are currently being used in the fields of agriculture, urban planning, forestry, mining, disaster management, surveillance, transport etc.
NMDC and IIT Kharagpur would develop spectral products, methods and algorithms for exploration using the drone (UAV) for mining. The collaboration between NMDC and IIT Kharagpur would further lead to the development of software spectral tools for mineral excavation and capacity-building programs on mining technology.
 
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