But in places such as the Central Aldan ore district in the Russian Far East—where concentrations of the precious metal have been discovered—mining operations are large enough to be seen from space. Central Aldan is one of Russia’s largest gold ore districts, with the mineral occurring in numerous deposits, or “lodes,” in the fractured rock. The Kuranakh gold deposit was discovered in 1947, and a moderate amount of gold was extracted by 1955. In areas where a lode has been eroded, pieces of gold can become concentrated by rivers and streams into placer deposits. From April to December in the 2019 mining season, three dredges extracted 18,600 ounces of gold from the Bolshoy Kuranakh placer deposit.