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History of PlanHistory of Mining in PlanáDigging for Uranium Ore
Šlik Mint in Planá

Digging for Uranium Ore


The history of mining uranium ore goes predominantly back to the period of the second half of 20th century, even though in the district of St. Vitus Guild / Cech Sv. Vita / it was mined much earlier. Prospecting was mostly done in the sixties and seventies, namely in the localities of Dolní Žandov, Brtná, Stará Voda, Kladská, Sv. Anna, and Hlinne. The effort, nevertheless, brought negative or unprofitable results. Rich uranium ores were proved in the localities of Dyleň, Vítkov, and Zadní Chodov. These deposits were passed on the mining establishment " Uranium Mines West Bohemia ".

Deposit in Zadní Chodov

The area of Zadní Chodov is an old mining sector, rich in utility of minerals that are represented by ores containing U, Pb, Bi, Co, Cu. In the area between Zadní Chodov and Horní Ves prospecting / mainly for U ore / was carried out by German geologists at the beginning of 20th century / about 24 testing shafts were sunk /.

Basic prospecting of broader expanse in the area of deposits took place since the beginning of 1946 already. In August 1952 the very deposit Zadní Chodov was found during autogamma prospecting. Sinking of pit No. la / =19a / immediately started, and after its filling and closing the work carried on by digging pits No. l, 2 and No. 3. At that time the operation was done by the management of Soviet geologists.

With regard to a rather great variability of ore contents in the rock / ca. from 0.4 to 15 m / it was problematic to apply mechanization for digging. Wheelbarrow, " šimeček " / a winch with hand guided shovel /, scraping winch, scoop transporter, and to a little extent rail less loader with a bin were used for digging and tunneling.

Breaking the rock was done by hand / mattock, pneumatic drill / or by blasting with drilling hammers, while the VK 22 type was used.

In the deposit of Zadní Chodov 31 995 611 cubic metres of rock containing 1 618 421 cubic metres of ore material were dug / No. 1 shaft = 246 618, No. 2 shaft = 256 788, No.3 shaft = 1 086 015 /, 1 990 229 tons of ore with an average content of 0.204% and 4066 tons of metal.

Prospecting pits: 181 760 metres were sunk
Horizontal work: 172 470 metres were tunneled altogether
Vertical work: 75 756 metres were dug.
Depth reached in Shaft:
No.l ... 401.6m.
No.2... 775.9m.
No.3... 1263.2m.
No.12... 780.4m.
No.13... 1083.8m.
The last tunneled level 28th is 1,208.2 m under earth surface. About 200 430 people were employed in the mine.
Mining was stopped in No. 1 shaft by 01. 01. 1963, in No.2 shaft by 01. 01. 1989, in No.3 shaft by 18. 12. 1992.
Filling and closing the mine was begun on 227 037 1993.
The last remainder of the head frame in the district of No.3 shaft was pulled down on November 11 th 1993.
After demolishing all the frames all mines were filled and closed.
Vítkov II Deposit

It was not mined in the close vicinity of Vítkov II deposit. Nearby by Historic mining was carried out as early as at Prehussite time, namely in: Pořejov, Světce, Tachov, Malý Rapotín, Pernolec, Trnová, Pavlovice, an Bezděkov.

Before the Vítkov II deposit was found, vast prospecting was done in the massif of Bor that was launched in 1953 54 when ore deposits were discovered in Březi 7 1953 7 and Ostrov u Tachova 7 1953 54 7, in Oldřichov 7 1954 7, Pernolec and at the locality Vítkov Vítkov II.

Not before May 1960 occurrence of uranium ore apt for mining was testified Vitkov II deposit. Mining was started in a smaller prospecting level, and in the place of coming up opencast mining was done, too. Extracting was mostly done in granite. Final depth of the pit was 950,9 m, and 16 levels were tunneled from it. As another escape the so called Klíčov No. 10 / JK / shaft was used in the mine, which reached the depth of 738,5 m. The deepest / XXI / prospected level was tunneled 922,2 m deep.

Four kilogrammes of explosive were needed for boring of one cubic metre of rock. Digging was mostly done through a so called open pop or by means of ascending method. 1 860 154 cubic metres of rock were broken altogether, 3 205 100 tons of ore material containing in average 0,124% and 3 973 tons of metal. Scrapers, further NN 12 V, Cavo 310 or T2 GH were used for loading. Due to the minig to several sinking places on the surface. In 1964, 1966, 1971 there came to sinking into the pops while digging 0 3 zone as far as the sixth level / 90 000 cubic metres altogether /. In December 1971 the joining contact of the zones 020/22 and 030 sank 11000 cubic metres in volume, and in 1982 a volume of 5 000 cubic metres in zone 0 30. All the hollows were subsequently filled, their vicinity was fenced and closed up, and their possible further sinking has been kept in eye.

Altogether 631 637,0 m. of pits were broken, 82 973,1 m. of horizontal galleries were tunneled, 44 372,5 m. of shafts were dug in the mine The mine employed ca. 330 475 people.

The last symbolic waggon was mined in Vítkov II deposit on Dec. 19th, 1990 and at the begginning of January 1991 the mine began to be liquidated and flooded. Klíčov No. 10 shaft is filled up to the surfice, the main VII shaft is closed between 1st level and the surface by a plug and covered with a concrete slab.

Uranium Deposits at Dyleň

The uranium deposit Dyleň was found by means of automobile gamma crossprofiling in 1964. An opencast mine was launched on the main ore lens, and not far away from it shaft No. 73 was sunk, which was called Dl Pit later on. The first level to be explored was tunneled 69,6 metres deep under the surface. This work was carried out by the Geological Research of Uranium Industry in Přibram .

On May 1st, 1966 the deposit was commited to the mining concern of UDZC / Uranium Mining West Bohemia /. The mine was opened by the 1,003.7 m deep Dl Pit and Pit D2 that was 1,258.4 m deep. Eighteen levels were tunneled, the deepest of which was the 22nd level in the depth of 1,226.0 metres.

The farthest tunneled level was the 264 m deep level five. The deposits have been explored here up to the length of 1450 m and up to the width of 1260 m. Mining was foremost done by the slope method with filling and the so called open pop. Altogether 421,592 cubic metres of rock were broken during the digging operation. 786,706 tons of ore containing rock were mined that yielded 1,121.0 tons of metal, i.e. 0.140% content. In the mine 130,280.7 m of wells were drilled, 28,242.1 m of horizontal galleries and 13,774.5 m of shafts and pits were tunneled.

During its operation ca 100 150 people were employed in the mine. Mining was ended up by August 31st, 1991.




Josef Ansl, 2003