“The Nagut deposit”

The Nagut mineral waters deposit has a very interesting and at the same time difficult destiny. Its discovery occurred in the 60s of the XX century in the process of oil and gas deposits exploratory drilling. During these works, the richest valuable mineral waters reserves of different chemical composition were found, but several times and for a long time their development and industrial operation was suspended. Perhaps, no other mineral water deposit in the North Caucasus has survived such contrasting periods of development and complete oblivion as Nagut, therefore its history is especially informative for us.

The need for the new mineral water deposit development arose in the Soviet Union in the early 1980s, when it was discovered that the existing mineral waters springs "Essentuki No. 4" and "Essentuki No. 17" no longer provided all the needs of Essentuki resort, and even more so they would not be enough for the satellite city of Essentuki resort complex, the construction of which was planned in the same period. This led to the start of new exploration works at the Nagut deposit, which were suspended for the first time immediately after the mineral waters discovery due to their extremely difficult technical and geological conditions. The revival of the work at the Nagut mineral waters deposit is entirely the merit of the head of the Kavminvodskaya hydrogeological party Boris Iosifovich Minkin. Faced with difficulties, he turned to colleagues from the Volga-Don Geological Department, and with their help, geological exploration work at the deposit was continued at the territory of the Mineralovodsk and Andropov districts. The Nagut hydro-geological consignment was formed, headed by Boris Iosifovich Minkin; Gennady F. Kovalevsky, the candidate of geological and mineralogical sciences, was appointed to the main hydrogeologist, Victor Ostroukhov to the chief engineer. The mineral water of the Nagut deposit was at a depth of 1500 meters and had a temperature of up to 100 degrees Celsius in the bowels. Exploration works was complicated by the thermal waters presence and large amount of spontaneous gas evolution. However, it haven’t prevent to finish the work safely. From 1976 to 1986, a number of new types of mineral waters were discovered at the Nagut mineral waters deposit. Among them are analogues of widely known types: Essentuki No. 4, Borjomi, Dilijan, Lazarevsky, Richal-su, Ankavansky, Arzani. However, not only the explored mineral water was the result of the work done. During the solution of this main task, dozens of methods of hydrogeological research and drilling of wells under the most difficult conditions were tested and introduced into wide practice. The unique experience of the Nagut mineral waters deposit exploration became the property of advanced domestic and world science, was awarded twenty-six medals at the Exhibition of National Economic Achievements, was published in dozens of articles in the media and scientific publications. For the industrial bottling of the Nagut deposit mineral water, a modern factory with a mineral pipeline from the well was built. At the first stage the capacity of the factory was up to 400 cub. m. per day, what allowed completely to cover the need of many regions of the Soviet Union in mineral water. However, with the onset of the 1990s, the situation at the Nagut mineral waters deposit deteriorated significantly. The mineral water extraction and bottling, and additional exploration even more have been suspended. And only in 1999 the Nagut deposit of mineral waters began to gradually revive. An additional exploration of the deposit was carried out, the resource potential of mineral waters was overestimated in the direction of increasing. At the moment, there are five production wells at the Nagut deposit, which produce four types of mineral waters. This is the therapeutic mineral water "Essentuki No. 17", the therapeutic-table "Essentuki No. 4", the waters of Borjomi type "Nagutskaya-26" and "Nagutskaya-56". Special attention should be paid to the mineral waters "Nagutskaya-26" and "Nagutskaya-56", the chemical composition of which is identical to the composition of the world-famous mineral water "Borjomi". At present, along with the industrial extraction of the Nagut deposit mineral waters, further exploration is continuing with a view to accurately assessing their reserves.

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