The Role of Airborne Radiometric Survey in Defining the Distribution of Phosphate Rocks in the Syrian Desert and the Northern Palmyrides

Exploration & Mining Geology, Vol. 6, No. 3, 1997

Gamma-ray spectrometry, an effective tool in geological mapping, was used to define boundaries between various lithological formations in three adjacent areas of Central Syria, namely, the Syrian Desert, Ar Rassafeh Badiayat and the Northern Palmyrides mountains. This paper describes the role of an airborne gamma spectrometric survey which was orginally undertaken to assist uranium exploration. Interpretation of the total count data obtained through the survey has led to significant modifications and corrections to the previously published distribution map of the palaeogene phosphate rocks. Another important result of the survey is the discovery of four previously unknown phosphorite horizons in the Rasm Al-Aawabed area of the Northern Palmyrides. In addition, previously unknown phosphatic horizons are outlined in the other study areas. The importance of this technique as an effective prospecting method, not only for U but also for exploring for the economically important phosphorite formations in Syria, is emphasized. Furthermore, its role in geological mapping is stressed, especially in areas that lack sufficient geological data.
Mots Clés: Gamma-ray spectrometry, Geological mapping, Syria, Uranium exploration