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ROCK PHOSPHATE IN RAJASTHAN """"""""""""".......................................................................................................................................................................................

INTRODUCTION

T he term "Rock phosphate" is applied to the rock in which one or more phosphate min

era Is, usually calcium phosphate of ~uffi cient grade and suitable composition are

present which permits its use directly or after concentration, in the manufacture of commercial
products. The chemical analysis of rock phosphate is usually reported as a percentage of P 20S or
a tricalcium phosphate Ca3 (P04)2.,
Out of the three major plant nutrients nitrogen, phosp}:lorous and potassium, the phosphrous is
essential for root development, hastening maturity of crops and in increasing the protein content of
grains.
The rock phosphate is an important constituent for the manufacture of the superphosphate, triple
super
phosphate, nitro phosphate, mono and diammonium . phosphate and dicalcium phosphate
besides other phosphorous based chemicals.
The total reserves of rock phosphate known so far in the country are about 175 million tonnes out
of which 122 M.T. are of low grade containing 10-20% P20S'
In India, rock phosphate is found in the states of Madhya Pradesh (Jhabua), Uttar Pradesh
(Mussoorie)Pithoragarh, Durmula), Himachal Pradesh (Sirmur) Tamilnadu and Rajasthan. Out of
these rock phosphate, only Rajasthan and Madhya Pradesh are of economic importance. ~he rest
all are small deposits of low grade ore. In Madhya Pradesh about 35 million tonnes Rock
phosphate reserves have been assessed containing 20-30% P20S' .
OCCURRENCE IN RAJASTHAN
The Rajasthan deposits are most important from the view point of their P20s content and total
reserves. In the state. The phosphorite deposit ar~ located in Jaisalmer, Udaipur Banswara, Jaipur
and Alwar districts. In Rajasthan it occurs both as rock phosphate and in apatite form.
~_:____L._- ..:__~_I ~. .11_":
The description of the deposits in.Rajasthan is given below:
J aisalmer District
(i) Birmania deposit:
The rock phosphate deposit near Birmania is located about 100 km. northwest of Barmer. It occurs
in the rocks of Palaeozoic age. It can be traced for about 4 kms. in NNE- SSW direction and is'1 to
4 meters thick. The phosphate rock is either calcareous, slaw or sandy in the north but to the south
it occurs as thick black band in limestone. Phosphorite is also associated with cherty bands.
Detailed prospecting which included geological mapping on 1:500 Scale, trenChing and 2054
meters drilling has been carried out and reserve of about 4.34 million tonnes of rock phosphate
with 12.15%P2Os has been estimated in this area.
(ii) Fatehgarh deposit:
The phosphorite horizon occurs about 88 kn\. north of Barmer on Barmer-Jaisalmer road. It can be
traced from Sarda in the east to the small hill, 3 km. S20° E of Bhiyasar, for a distance of 12 km.

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The Fatehgarh formation comprises ferruginous sandstone interbedded with yellowish white
friable sandstone and sub bentonitic clays of probably Upper Cretaceous to Eocene age. Its
aggregate thickness is 60-70 metres but the lower 7 to 10 metres only is phosphatic. The grade of
the deposit is quite low.
U dai pur District
Udaipur district is the most important district for phosphate deposits. A large number of
occurrences/ deposits have been located around Udaipur city. The
important ones are given ~w:
(i) Kanpur deposit:
It is located 8 km. ...east of Udaipur on Udaipur Jhamarkotra road. The rock formation in the area
belong to the Aravalli Supergroup intruded at places by post- Aravalli granites. The general trend
of the formation is NNE- SSW, dipping at 20°-40° due NNW.
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Due to complex folding the phosphate horizon is repeated. The phosphatic material occurs mainly
within light to bluish grey compact limestone or calcareous rocks. The Phosphatic band has a
strike length of about 600 mts. and its thickness varies from 4 to 6 mts. The indicated reserves
have been put at 3.0 million tonnes having 12-13% P205 content. The deposit is being worked by
MI s R.S.M.D.C. Ltd.
(ii) Dakan Kotra:- .. /
The phosphate deposit is lOcated about 12 km. SSE of Udaipur. The rock formations here are
similar to those found at Kanpur. The rock phosphate occurs within dark grey & bluish limestone
and cherty quartzites. The reserves have been estimated at 1.4 million tonnes having 12 to 20% P
2°5 content. The deposit is also being worked by MI s. R.S.M.D.C. Ltd.
(iii) Karbaria Ka Guda:
It is situated 1 km. west of Kanpur deposit. The discontinuous horizon of phosphatic rock is 1-5
metres thick. The trend of the rock is N-S which can be seen up to a distance of 1.5 km. In the
northern part rock phosphate occurs at the contact of phyllite and quartzite while in the sourthern
part, it is associated with yellow brown cherty, brecciated quartzite. It~ aggregate length is about
300 mts. The reserves have been estimated at 0.5 million tonnes containing 22 to 25% P205'
(iv) Matoon deposit:- ./
It is located 15 km. SE of Udaipur City. The rock formations belong to Aravali Supergroup and
are represented by dolomitic marbles, calcareous grits, chert, brecciated quartzite, quartzite &
phyllite. The phosphate band about 1 to 25 mts. thick is traceable for. 3.5 km. length and shows
pinching and swelling but it is usually thick (20m) in cherty quartizite. Based on 25 boreholes
covering 2250 mts. drilling the reserve has been estimated to about 9.2 million tonnes.This deposit
is being exploited by Mis Hindustan Zinc
Limited I I
. (v) Sisarma deposit:- ,/
It is located 10 km. SW of Udaipur and extends over
a length of about 2 km. The phosphorite is associated' with cherty dolomitic and siliceous
limestone of Aravalli Supergroup having a width of 7-20 metres. 20 channel were cut across the
mineralised zone and
11 bore holes with an aggregate drilling of 492.86 mts. have been drlled in the area. About
0.84 million
tonnes of rock phosphate reserves with 5 to 10% P 2°5 up to 50 mts. depth. have been estimated.
(vi) Neemuch Mata deposit:- J

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The deposit is located in Kataria hill about 3 km. north-west of Udaipur. The rock formations
are phyllites, shale, dolomite and siliceous limestone of Aravalli Supergroup. The phosphorite
occurs in form of small bends & lenses within 0.75 sq.km. area. On the basis of 32 boreholes
with an aggregate drilling of 1250.45 mts, reserves of 0.11 million tonnes containing 10% P
2°5 and 0.22 million tonnes with 5-10% P 2°5 have been estimated in this area.
(vii) Badgaon deposit :- /"
The rock phosphate deposit is located about 6 km. north of Udaipur on way to Gogunda. The
rock formations are phyllites, dolomitic and siliceous limestone and quartzite of Aravalli
Supergroup. The rock phosphate occurs in isolated patches, lenses within the limestone. The
width of rock phosphate varies from 3 to 22mt. On the basis of 704.85 mts: drilling spread
over 23 boreholes reserves of 3,47,405 tonnes
. of rock phosphate have been estimated with 3 to 23%P205content. .

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(viii) Jhamarkotra deposit:-
It is the biggest and high grade phosphorite deposit located about 24 km. SE of Udaipur. The
nearest railway station Kharwa Chanda, is about 10 km. from the deposit and lies on
Udaipurcity-Ahmedabad metergauge section of the western railway. However Umra is the
convenient railway station. The rock phosphate occurs in metasedimentary rocks of Aravalii
Supergroup (Precambrian age). It is of algal origin occuring in benyeen siliceous,
ferJ;Uginous, and cherty dolomitic limestone resting over basal quartzite and gritty quartzite
which unconformably rest over the Banded Gneissic Complex of Pre-Aravalli age. The deposit
extends over a strike length of 16 kms in horseshoe shape with average thickness of 15 meters.
Detailed prospecting was carried out by the state department of Mines & Geology, which
located this <;ieposit. Aresenre of 77.0 million tonnes of rock phosphate has been proved on
the basis of 60,000 mts. drilling in 500 bore holes. Out of these 17 million tonnes.
1A
u-. .. ft'"...-
is of +30%P 20S' grade and rest is of 12 to 30% P 20S
A beneficiation plant of 2000 tonnes per day capacity has been installed to up grade the low grade
phosphate having 16 - 17% P20s to 34% P20S' Presently M/ s. Rajasthan State Mines & Minerals
Limited, a state government undertaking is doing mining in part of the area.
In addition to above small occurrences/ incidences of phosphorite were also located near
Amberi( 10kIn. from Udaipur on Udaipur Rajsamand road), Berwas (8 kIn. From Udaipur on
Udaipur Chittor road, Undari (16 km. from Udaipur on Udaipur }harol Road.)
(ix) Apatite deposit:
The Apatite deposit is located near Niwania-Kikawas villages about 60 km. east of Udaipur.
Apatite occurs as thin veins and stringers, crisscrossing a large mass of crystalline limestone of
Aravalli Supergroup over an area of about 1.5 sq. km. Based on geological investigation by 912.52
mts. drilling in 28 bore holes, about 30,000 tonnes of apatite with 32-35% and one million tonnes
with 6 to 9% P20s were estimated in Kikawas area. 500 tonnes of apatite with 32-35% P 20S
content were estimated in Niwania area.
Banswara District (i) Sallopat deposit:
Phosphate rock associated with the dolotmte chert horizon of Aravalli Supergroup was located
near Sallopat, about 67 kms. SW of Banswara. The phosphorite zone 120mts. to 280 mts wide
extends over a length of 1-2 km. in NW-SE direction. Within this zone several lenses of phosphate
rock of different sizes and grade are present. The grade of the mineral varies from less than 10%
P20s to 20% P20s
Small occurrences of rock phosphate were also located near Ram-Ka-Munna and Jhermoti
Villages.

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Siker District
(i) Kerpura deposit:
The apatite deposit is located near Kerpura Salwari villages in rocks of Delhi Supergroup
and Post Delhi intrusives. Apatite occurs as irregular veins, stringers and disseminations in
quartz veins, amphibolites and granite pegmatites intruded in garnetiferous biotite schist.
A reserve of 21,520 tonnes of ore con
c..;..-+............:--------roo .11_"'
taining 15.14% P20s has been proved with another 16,000 tonnes of 15% P 20S grade in probable
cafegory.
J aipur District
Rock phosphate occurrenceswere located near Achrol village on Jaipur-Alwar road. Phosphorite is
associated with phyllite of Alwar formation. The P20s content is quite low and is about 5% only.
Alwar District
The occurrence of phosphorite were reported from Rajgarh teh. of Alwar district. Near Aduka
Adwani hills G.S.I. has located small band of phosphorite associated with horn stone breccia of
Alwar formation. The analytical results reveal that the P 20S content is up to 11% only.
Production of Rock Phosphate in India Year Production
(thousand tonnes)
617.42
1033.82 1096.65 1345.58
1992-93 1993-94 1994-95 1995-96
Production, Sale value, Revenue & number of leases of rock 'phosphote in Rajasthan.
Year Production SaleValue Revenue No. of leases.
(thous. tons.) (thous. Rs.) (thous.Rs.)
1992-93 234.54 128849.40 27866.00 4
\

1993-94 977.98 586057.80 87943.00 8

1994-95 891.83 624421.00 100726.00 8

1995-96 900.87 630105.60 118525.60 8

(Source: Statistical Section DMG)


SPECIFICATIONS OF pHOSPHATE MINERALS FOR INDUSTRIAL
USES.
Phosphorus, Nitrogen and Potash are the three main plant nutrients. PhosphQrous plays an
impOrtant role in root development and in the synthesis of protein, fats and carbohydrates. Its
deficiency in the soil can be made up by adding natural or manufactured phosphorous bearing
minerals/rocks. Apatite and rock phosphate are the two important minerals of phosphorous.
Apatite is of two types Le. chlorapatite hav