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Uranium deposits are generally classified based on host rocks, structural setting, and mineralogy of the deposit.
The most widely used classification scheme was developed by the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) and subdivides deposits into 15 categories.
They occur in close proximity to unconformities between relatively quartz-rich sandstones comprising the basal portion of relatively undeformed sedimentary basins and deformed metamorphic basement rocks.
These sedimentary basins are typically of Proterozoic age, however some Phanerozoic examples exist.
The basic themes of uranium ore genesis are host mineralogy, reduction-oxidation potential, and porosity.
The presence of a number of zones in crystals having different physicochemical characteristics has been revealed.Magmatic and detrital zircons recording an age of 2.53 Ga indicate that the sediments were derived from the granitic basement or similar sources and were deposited after 2.53 Ga.Hydrothermally altered zircons both in the basement and the cover provide concordant ages of 2.32 and 2.12 Ga and date two major hydrothermal events.Globally, the distribution of uranium ore deposits is widespread on all continents, with the largest deposits found in Australia, Kazakhstan, and Canada.
To date, high-grade deposits are only found in the Athabasca Basin region of Canada.
In the absence of robust age constraints, there is considerable confusion regarding the relative timing of sedimentation in these sub-basins.