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ArticleName Role of the Arctic Region in the innovation-driven economic development of Russia
DOI 10.17580/gzh.2015.07.04
ArticleAuthor Melnikov N. N.


Name & Surname: Melnikov N. N.
Company: Mining Institute, Kola Science Center, Russian Academy of Sciences (Apatity, Russia)
Work Position: Director
Scientific Degree: Academician of the Russian Academy of Sciences


Natural resources are the basis for the economic development of Russia. A lion’s share (95%) in the added value in the natural resources industry is mineral mining, and forestry and fishery make 5%. The current situation in the world’s economy has complicated Russia’s position in the field of natural resources and initiated shortage of some minerals in Russia. Replenishment of natural reserves and expansion of supply of some minerals that are now insufficient is possible with assistance of Russia’s Arctic. Being rich in oil and gas, this zone holds 10% of world’s nickel, 19% of platinum group metals, 10% of titanium, more than 3% of zinc, cobalt, silver and rare earth metals. Immense contribution to mineral mining in the Arctic zone is made by the Mining Institute, Kola Science Center, Russian Academy of Sciences. The Institute implements the research in the severe natural environment under difficult production conditions of the Kola Polar Area (Murmansk Region). The article gives a report of the research output results introduced into production. A new design of a pit wall with the vertical slope is validated: an increase in the ultimate slope of pit walls by 10–15 degrees magnifies open pit mineable reserves by 40–50%. For underground mines, a chart including conveyor transport and underground ore crushing is offered, and guidelines on combination open pit-and-underground mining at the sustainable mine capacity are given. In the framework of efficient development of subsoil, new technologies and equipment, techniques, reagents and concentration modes are proposed for mineral beneficiation. The Institute evolves the research areas that are new for the mining-related basic research. In terms of Shtokman gas and condensate field in the Barents Sea, a geodynamic monitoring system is generated for offshore hydrocarbons. Issues of energy supply in the Arctic zone are solved by means of using small-size power stations based on the ample international experience gained by the Institute in this field.

keywords Economical innovation, Arctic, Russia’s Arctic zone, resource potential, mineral reserves, mineral mining, scientific research, high technologies

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Full content Role of the Arctic Region in the innovation-driven economic development of Russia