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Reclamation of Former Uranium Mines


Radiation Safety Research and Development of Recommendations on Reclamation of Former Uranium Mines at Tuya-Muyun and Kyzyk-Jar Deposits of the Kyrgyzstan

Tech Area / Field

  • ENV-RED/Remediation and Decontamination/Environment
  • ENV-MRA/Modelling and Risk Assessment/Environment
  • ENV-WPC/Water Pollution and Control/Environment

3 Approved without Funding

Registration date

Leading Institute
Republican Special Industrial Complex, Kyrgyzstan, Bishkek


  • [Individual specialist]\nInstitute Josef Stefan, Slovenia, Ljublana

Project summary

The Project aim is to make an inventory for state of the sites and identify radiation safety for Tuya-Muun Radium-Uranium Mine and Kyzyl-jar Uranium Mine to develop set of measures for their complete rehabilitation.

The Project aims to solve ecological problems at the investigated and transboundary areas.

Project’s Urgency is associated with radiophobia of the population (more 50000 people), living at territories adjacent to the mines due to lacking of actual radiation situation information, and with necessity to rehabilitate the mine areas.

Project’s Essence

There are 53 tailing ponds within the Kyrgyzstan area, from which 31 are uranium ones. And also the Kyrgyzstan has 33 Waste Dumps, from which Tuya-Muyun radio-uranium mine and Kyzyl-Jar uranium mine contain uranium line radionuclides.

Tuya-Muyun Mine (Noukat Rayon, Osh Oblast) has been operated since 1904 up to 1933, now it is suspended.

By danger class and hazard type, according to [1], it is attributed to the first class because of extremely dangerous radioactive radiation with power up to 2mkSvhour. The mine is located in mountain area at 1200-1350 meters above sea level. Seismicity of the area makes 9 points. Mine territory is subjected to mudflow and landslide dangers at potential discharge to the Aravan-Sai River, within the downstream area of which 13 settlements are located with total population more than 46000 people, and further there are villages of the Uzbekistan border territory. The river water is used for irrigation purposes, and in some villages for everyday necessities.

Kyzyl-Jar Mine (Aksyi Rayon, Jalalabad Oblast) has been operated since 1946, and it was suspended in 1967. The mine facilities are located near to Kyzyl-Jar Village with total population about 4000 people. By danger class and hazard type, it is attributed to the first class because of extremely dangerous radioactive radiation with power up to 2.5mkSv/hour. The mine is located in mountain zone of Fergana Valley near to Uzbekistan border territory at 520 meters above sea level. Seismicity of the area makes 8 points.

For radiation safety of the both mines it is required complete rehabilitation of them, and development of package of measures to make the rehabilitation is a basic task of the Project.

  1. The following actions will be required to implement the Project:
  2. To analyse the information available for Tuya-Muyun and Kyzyl Jar mines (hereinafter “the sites”).
  3. To carry out the inventory for the sites.
  4. To implement topographical survey (М25000) at the territories with total area of 66 ha.
  5. To carry out the field investigations at the sites:
    • 1900 soil samples;
    • 300 bottom sediment samples;
    • Radiation monitoring survey at 1200 points.
  6. To analyse results of the field researches and develop a graphical model for radiation exposition.
  7. To develop measures on the site rehabilitation.
  8. To model possible transboundary consequences at occurrence of nature character emergencies at the sites.
  9. To carry out the informational work with regional state authorities and population.

The Project is based on many-years experience of the participants in the field of exploration, mining and disposal of uranium-containing ores and heavy metals within the Kyrgyzstan territory (1976 – 2009).

Implementation of the Project will provide the Kyrgyz Republic scientists and specialists (62% of total inputs in man-days) participated in the works associated with nuclear program with reorientation of their abilities to peaceful activity and encourage an integration of them into international scientific community, support researches for the peaceful purposes and contribute to solving regional and transboundary problems regarding to the radiation safety of the territories that conforms to ISTC activity objectives and directions.

Main Outputs of the Project will be:

  • inventory of the exploration sites;
  • topographical maps and layouts of the sites;
  • graphical models for radiation exposition of the site;
  • recommendations on complete rehabilitation of the mines;
  • population awareness on actual radiation situation within the areas adjoining to the mines;
  • experience in implementation of the similar projects.

It is expected that the using of the Project’s outcomes will allow:
  • to implement later the complete rehabilitation of the former uranium mines;
  • to forecast an effect of the existing radiation situation to the transbondary territories.

It is expected that the results to be obtained will allow to reduce social tension within the regions of the Project implementation and increase ecological competence of the population during the informational work process by the Project staff.

Information Sources:

  1. UDK 628, BBK 30.69. G72.

Geology and Mineral Resources State Agency at the Government of the Kyrgyz Republic, Ministry of Emergencies of the Kyrgyz Republic, department of Emeregencies Monitoring and Forecasting and Management of Tailings.

State Cadastre of the Kyrgyz Republic Mining Industry Wastes (Tailing Ponds and Waste Dumps). Bishkek-2006, page -345.


The International Science and Technology Center (ISTC) is an intergovernmental organization connecting scientists from Kazakhstan, Armenia, Tajikistan, Kyrgyzstan, and Georgia with their peers and research organizations in the EU, Japan, Republic of Korea, Norway and the United States.


ISTC facilitates international science projects and assists the global scientific and business community to source and engage with CIS and Georgian institutes that develop or possess an excellence of scientific know-how.

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