Mineralogy, geochemistry, and ore formation of Nuwaifa bauxite deposit, western desert of Iraq View Full Text


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Article Info

DATE

2017-02-10

AUTHORS

Thair Al-Ani

ABSTRACT

Nuwaifa Formation is a part of sequence stratigraphy that belongs to the Jurassic system exposed in the western desert of Iraq. The Jurassic system consists of Ubaid, Hussainiyat, Amij, Muhaiwir, and Najmah formations. Each formation is composed of basal clastic unit overlain by upper carbonate unit. Nuwaifa karst bauxite was developed in fossil karsts within the Ubaid Formation in areas where maximum intersection of fractures and faults exist. This bauxitization process affected the upper surface of the Ubaid limestone formation, which directly underlies the Nuwaifa bauxite Formation. Nuwaifa Formation represents karst-filling deposit that consists of a mixture of allochthonous (sandstone, claystone, and mudstone) and autochthonous lithofacies (bauxite kaolinite, kaolinitic bauxite, iron-rich bauxite, and flint clay). Most bauxite bodies occur within the autochthonous lithofacies and are lenticular in shape with maximum thickness ranges from few meters to 35 m and in some place up to 100 m. Petrographically, the bauxite deposit exhibits collomorphic-fluidal, pisolitic, oolitic, nodular, brecciated, and skeletal textures indicative of authigenic origin. Mineralogy boehmite and gibbsite are the only bauxite minerals; the former is dominant in the upper parts of the bauxite profiles, whereas the latter is dominant throughout the lower and middle part of the bauxite. Kaolinite, hematite, goethite, calcite, and anatase occur to a lesser extent. The study bauxites are mainly composed of Al2O3 (33–69.6 wt.%), SiO2 (8.4–42 wt.%), Fe2O3 (0.5–15.9 wt.%), and TiO2 (0.7–6.1 wt.%) with LOI ranging from 13.5 to 19.1 wt.%. Geochemical investigations indicate that the immobile elements like Al2O3, TiO2, Cr, Zr, and Ni were obviously enriched, while SiO2, Fe2O3, CaO, MgO, Zn, Co, Ba, Mn, Cu, and Sr were depleted during bauxitization process. The results of this study strongly suggest that the bauxite deposits of the Nuwaifa Formation are derived from the kaolinite of the Lower Hussainiyat Formation. More... »

PAGES

72

Identifiers

URI

http://scigraph.springernature.com/pub.10.1007/s12517-016-2817-8

DOI

http://dx.doi.org/10.1007/s12517-016-2817-8

DIMENSIONS

https://app.dimensions.ai/details/publication/pub.1083752347


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