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Context: India to undertake deep ocean mining with ‘Samudrayaan’ project.

About Samudrayaan:

  • It is a pilot project of the Ministry of Earth Sciences for deep ocean mining for rare minerals.
  • It proposes to send men into the deep sea in a submersible vehicle for ocean studies.
  • The project is expected to become a reality by 2021-22.
  • The project has been undertaken by the National Institute of Ocean Technology (NIOT).


  • If the ‘Samudrayaan’ project is successful, India will join the league of developed nations in the exploration of minerals from oceans.
  • India could be the first developing country to undertake such a project.

What are PMN?

  • Polymetallic nodules (also known as manganese nodules) are potato-shaped, largely porous nodules found in abundance carpeting the sea floor of world oceans in deep sea.

Composition: Besides manganese and iron, they contain nickel, copper, cobalt, lead, molybdenum, cadmium, vanadium, titanium, of which nickel, cobalt and copper are considered to be of economic and strategic importance.

Potential: It is envisaged that 10% of recovery of that large reserve can meet the energy requirement of India for the next 100 years. It has been estimated that 380 million metric tonnes of polymetallic nodules are available at the bottom of the seas in the Central Indian Ocean.

Current Affairs 2020

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