Geneq SXPad Rugged Handheld Computer and SXBlue GPS Receiver. (Credit: Thomas Bell / Pan African Minerals)
Uranium is a valuable element that can be used in generating clean electricity, with no associated emissions of carbon dioxide, sulfates, mercury or selenium. For those looking to utilize it for that purpose, one of the issues they contend with is sourcing enough of it.
Companies like Pan African Minerals fill that void, going to remote regions around the world to find uranium. The explorers use a lot of high-tech tools to make their work finding the element more efficient and as clear-cut as possible.
“No good exploration program should have any surprises,” said Thomas Bell, vice president of Exploration at Pan African Minerals – Niger.
To minimize unexpected events in the discovery process, Bell and his crew in Niger are diligent about keeping quality records. One of the tools they use to maintain standards is a Geneq SXPad Rugged Handheld Computer. The platform serves as a useful general-purpose data collection tool, says Bell.
“Mapping and soil surveys are two of the techniques we use in the early exploration stage,” said Bell. “As we get a little more advanced, the SXPad is used to record our drill site geologists’ downhole observations and measurements.”
In the more complex stages of their exploration work, geologists with Pan African Minerals conduct radiometric soil surveys. These often help with finding buried uranium. Software available on the SXPad Rugged Handheld Computer also helps with multispectral analysis.
“We also do a lot of geologic mapping with ArcPad (software) on the SXPad, then transfer the data to our project GIS (infrastructure),” said Bell.
One of the keys to maintaining data quality is minimizing errors in transcription. Bell says that using the SXPad to automatically transfer information via bluetooth virtually eliminates those issues.
Top image: Geneq SXPad Rugged Handheld Computer and SXBlue GPS Receiver. (Credit: Thomas Bell / Pan African Minerals)