Detecting Mineral Resources and Suggesting a Physical Concentration Flowsheet for Economic Minerals at the Northern Border Region of Saudi Arabia
Received: 8 March 2022 | Revised: 28 March 2022 | Accepted:5 April 2022 | Online: 6 June 2022
Corresponding author: M. I. Moustafa
There is a limited number of studies on sand deposit resources of Saudi Arabia, which cover nearly the one-third of the area of the country, whereas most of these studies deal with the environmental rather than the mineralogical or mining aspects. In this paper, and in the effort to detect the mineral resources of the Northern Border Region, the surficial Wadi sediments along the Ar'ar-Sakaka road are studied. The deposits of several Wadies (Al Aqra, Shiban al Hanzaliyat, and Arar) are mixed. The sediments of the collected samples are investigated to determine definite areas characterized by a relatively higher content of heavy minerals and a relatively lower content of carbonate minerals that are also friable enough to be investigated by some of the available physical concentration techniques. A large quantity of the surficial deposits, weighing 4.69 tons was collected from the stretch at the investigated area which is 3km long and 1.5km wide. Evaluation of the heavy minerals content, their types, and their ability for concentration and separation, was conducted. A suggested physical concentration flowsheet was concluded for concentrating and separating the contained economic minerals. The average heavy mineral content is 1.55 wt% and the identified economic minerals are magnetite, ilmenite, hematite, goethite, zircon, rutile, anatase, monazite, and xenotime. The other contained heavy minerals include monoclinic pyroxenes (diopside, and augite), monoclinic amphibole (winchite), and muscovite mica. Dolomite and calcite carbonate are also contained. The concluding results ensure that magnetite, zircon, TiO2 minerals, and monazite are mineable for separation in individual mineral concentrates. Most of the detected economic minerals are recorded in the area for the first time. Monazite, xenotime, and zircon are responsible for some recorded radioactivity in the area.
Keywords:wet gravity concentration, high intensity magnetic separation, heavy liquid separation, X-ray diffraction, scanning electron microscopy
A. M. Al-Safarjalani, Placer gold deposits in the Hofuf Formation The Eastern Province of Saudi Arabia. Al-Ahsa, Saudi Arabia: King Faisal University, 2004.
S. D. Bussey, P. M. Taufen, B. J. Suchomel, and M. Ward, "Soil and stream sediment geochemical dispersion over the Bell Springs deposit, Hog Ranch Mine, Washoe County, Nevada," Journal of Geochemical Exploration, vol. 47, no. 1, pp. 217–234, Apr. 1993. DOI: https://doi.org/10.1016/0375-6742(93)90067-V
J. B. Seeley and T. J. Senden, "Alluvial gold in Kalimantan, Indonesia: A colloidal origin?," Journal of Geochemical Exploration, vol. 50, no. 1, pp. 457–478, Mar. 1994. DOI: https://doi.org/10.1016/0375-6742(94)90036-1
J. V. Tingley and S. B. Castor, "Stream sediment exploration for gold and silver in Nevada — application of an old prospecting method using modern analytical techniques," Journal of Geochemical Exploration, vol. 66, no. 1, pp. 1–16, Jul. 1999. DOI: https://doi.org/10.1016/S0375-6742(99)00013-8
M. I. Moustafa, M. I. A. Shariah, and M. S. Aljuhani, "Mineralogical Investigation of Economic Minerals Content in Wadi Arar, Northern Border Region, Kingdom of Saudi Arabia," Indian Journal of Science and Technology, vol. 10, no. 36, pp. 1–29, Sep. 2017. DOI: https://doi.org/10.17485/ijst/2017/v10i36/112676
A. A. Mahessar et al., "Sediment Transport Dynamics in the Upper Nara Canal Off-taking from Sukkur Barrage of Indus River," Engineering, Technology & Applied Science Research, vol. 10, no. 6, pp. 6563–6569, Dec. 2020. DOI: https://doi.org/10.48084/etasr.3924
R. K. Sinha, Industrial Minerals. New Delhi, India: Oxford & IBH, 1982.
M. I. Moustafa, "Investigations of some physical properties of zircon and rutile to prepare high purity mineral concentrates from black sand deposits, Rosetta, Egypt," M.S. thesis, Mansoura University, Mansoura, Egypt, 1995.
N. P. H. Padmanabhan, T. Sreenivas, and N. K. Rao, "Processing of Ores of Titanium, Zirconium, Hafnium, Niobium, Tantalum, Molybdenum, Rhenium, and Tungsten: International Trends and the Indian Scene," High Temperature Materials and Processes, vol. 9, no. 2–4, pp. 217–248, Jul. 1990. DOI: https://doi.org/10.1515/HTMP.1990.9.2-4.217
V. S. Bashir, "Zircon sand and its application in ceramic industry," Saket Industrial Digest, vol. 2, no. 6, pp. 23–28, 1996.
N. M. Strakhov, G. I. Bushinskii, and L. V. Pustovalov, Metody Izocheniya Ocadochnykh Porod, Tom I (Methods of Studying Sedimentary Rocks). Moscow, Russia: Gosgeoitekhiz dat, 1957.
B. A. Wills, "Gravity Concentration Part 1," Mining Magazine, pp. 325–332, Oct. 1984.
R. O. Burt, Gravity concentration technology. Netherlands, Amsterdam: Elsevier, 1984.
B. A. Wills, Mineral Processing Technology, 5th ed. Oxford, UK: Pergamon Press, 1992.
M. Dieye, M. M. Thiam, A. Geneyton, and M. Gueye, "Monazite Recovery by Magnetic and Gravity Separation of Medium Grade Zircon Concentrate from Senegalese Heavy Mineral Sands Deposit," Journal of Minerals and Materials Characterization and Engineering, vol. 9, no. 6, pp. 590–608, Nov. 2021. DOI: https://doi.org/10.4236/jmmce.2021.96038
N. M. Hammoud, "Physical and chemical properties of some Egyptian beach economic minerals in relation to their concentration problems," Ph.D. dissertation, Cairo University, Cairo, Egypt, 1973.
M. I. Moustafa, "Mineralogy and beneficiation of some economic minerals in the Egyptian black sands," Ph.D. dissertation, Mansoura University, Mansoura, Egypt, 1999.
M. A. M. Alghamdi and A. A. E. Hegazy, "Physical Properties of Soil Sediment in Wadiarar, Kingdom of Saudi Arabia," International Journal of Civil Engineering, vol. 2, no. 5, pp. 1–8, 2013.
M. I. Moustafa, "Remarks on the physical, mineralogical features and amenability of the northern coast of Egypt," Egyptian Mineralogist, vol. 12, pp. 29–49, 2000.
C. M. Gramaccioli and T. V. Segalstad, "A uranium- and thorium-rich monazite from a South-Alpine pegmatite at Piona, Italy," American Mineralogist, vol. 63, no. 7–8, pp. 757–761, Aug. 1978.
G. Franz, G. Andrehs, and D. Rhede, "Crystal chemistry of monazite and xenotime from Saxothuringian-Moldanubian metapelites, NE Bavaria, Germany," European Journal of Mineralogy, vol. 8, pp. 1097–1118, Oct. 1996. DOI: https://doi.org/10.1127/ejm/8/5/1097
B. van Emden, M. R. Thornber, J. Graham, and F. J. Lincoln, "The incorporation of actinides in monazite and xenotine from Placer deposits in Western Australia," Canadian Mineralogist, vol. 35, no. 1, pp. 95–104, 1997.
H.-J. Forster, "The chemical composition of REE-Y-Th-U-rich accessory minerals in peraluminous granites of the Erzgebirge-Fichtelgebirge region, Germany, Part I: The monazite-(Ce)-brabantite solid solution series," American Mineralogist, vol. 83, no. 3–4, pp. 259–272, Mar. 1998. DOI: https://doi.org/10.2138/am-1998-3-409
H.-J. Foerster, "The chemical composition of REE-Y-Th-U-rich accessory minerals in peraluminous granites of the Erzgebirge-Fichtelgebirge region, Germany; Part II, Xenotime," American Mineralogist, vol. 83, no. 11-12_Part_1, pp. 1302–1315, Dec. 1998. DOI: https://doi.org/10.2138/am-1998-11-1219
D. Rose, "Brabantite. Ca Th (PO_4)_2, a new mineral of the monazite group," Neues Jahrbuch fur Mineralogie, vol. 6, pp. 247–257, 1980.
A.-M. Seydoux-Guillaume, R. Wirth, W. Heinrich, and J.-M. Montel, "Experimental determination of Thorium partitioning between monazite and xenotime using analytical electron microscopy and X-ray diffraction Rietveld analysis," European Journal of Mineralogy, vol. 14, no. 5, pp. 869–878, Sep. 2002. DOI: https://doi.org/10.1127/0935-1221/2002/0014-0869
M. I. Moustafa, "Chemistry and Origin of Enigmatic Monazite and Chevkinite/Perrierite in the Egyptian Black Beach Sand," Resource Geology, vol. 60, no. 3, pp. 271–287, 2010. DOI: https://doi.org/10.1111/j.1751-3928.2010.00132.x
K. Praveen and L. B. Roy, "Assessment of Groundwater Quality Using Water Quality Indices: A Case Study of Paliganj Distributary, Bihar, India," Engineering, Technology & Applied Science Research, vol. 12, no. 1, pp. 8199–8203, Feb. 2022. DOI: https://doi.org/10.48084/etasr.4696
N. Kumar, A. A. Mahessar, S. A. Memon, K. Ansari, and A. L. Qureshi, "Impact Assessment of Groundwater Quality using WQI and Geospatial tools: A Case Study of Islamkot, Tharparkar, Pakistan," Engineering, Technology & Applied Science Research, vol. 10, no. 1, pp. 5288–5294, Feb. 2020. DOI: https://doi.org/10.48084/etasr.3289
How to Cite
MetricsAbstract Views: 611
PDF Downloads: 328
Copyright (c) 2022 M. I. Moustafa, M. A. Tashkandi, A. M. El-Sherif
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License.
Authors who publish with this journal agree to the following terms:
- Authors retain the copyright and grant the journal the right of first publication with the work simultaneously licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution License that allows others to share the work with an acknowledgement of the work's authorship and initial publication in this journal.
- Authors are able to enter into separate, additional contractual arrangements for the non-exclusive distribution of the journal's published version of the work (e.g., post it to an institutional repository or publish it in a book), with an acknowledgement of its initial publication in this journal.
- Authors are permitted and encouraged to post their work online (e.g., in institutional repositories or on their website) after its publication in ETASR with an acknowledgement of its initial publication in this journal.