Ural Mountains-Ore Deposits                      
Cochise College                                                                                        
Geology Home Page 
Geology Exploration Using Google Earth  
Roger Weller, geology instructor 
wellerr@cochise.edu )

last edited:  8/29/16            8 views

    I recently read an geology article that mentioned "the metal-rich Ural Mountains".  I knew little about
the Ural Mountains in Russia, except that they are a long, eroded fold mountain range separating Europe
from Asia.  How much could I learn about the area simply by going to Google Earth and doing some
The Ural Mountains as seen from outer space

Here are linear features within the Urals, such a chains of mountain peaks and long river valleys
between the ranges, marked by yellow lines using the measuring tool from Google Earth. 
The Ural Mountains are approximately 1200 miles long.

Without using the yellow-mapped linears, the view of the Ural Mountains is rather unimpressive.

Here is an unmarked oblique view of the Ural Mountains.

Highlighting the linear nature of the Urals really emphasizes its great length.


     The position of visible, open-pit mines were mapped.  The large number of mines backs up the
statement the the Urals are metal-rich.  Not mentioned in the geology article is that most of the mines
are located to the East of the Ural Mountains, mostly on nearly level land.  The deposits do fall on a
narrow band.  Unlike the mineral deposits in the American Southwest where the land is barren and the
color of mineral deposits stand out, this area in Russia is covered by vegetation, making mineral
exploration difficult.  Consequently, the search for new mineral deposits in the Urals must resort to
geochemistry of soils, aeromagnetics, seismic reflection, and other geophysical techniques.

An example of one of the large open mines adjacent to the Urals

Another example of one of the open pit mines of the Urals

Just credit photos to Google Earth/R.Weller/Cochise College.