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Minerals 2018, 8(5), 197; https://doi.org/10.3390/min8050197

Linkages between the Genesis and Resource Potential of Ferromanganese Deposits in the Atlantic, Pacific, and Arctic Oceans

1
Ocean and Earth Science, National Oceanography Centre Southampton, University of Southampton Waterfront Campus, European Way, Southampton SO14 3ZH, UK
2
Shirshov Institute of Oceanology, Russian Academy of Sciences, 36, Nakhimovsky prt., 117997 Moscow, Russia
3
National Oceanography Centre, University of Southampton Waterfront Campus, European Way, Southampton SO14 3ZH, UK
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Received: 6 March 2018 / Revised: 26 April 2018 / Accepted: 3 May 2018 / Published: 5 May 2018
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Deep-Sea Minerals and Gas Hydrates)
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Abstract

In addition to iron and manganese, deep sea ferromanganese deposits, including nodules and crusts, contain significant amounts of economically interesting metals, such as cobalt (Co), nickel (Ni), copper (Cu), and rare Earth elements and yttrium (REY). Some of these metals are essential in the development of emerging and new-generation green technologies. However, the resource potential of these deposits is variable, and likely related to environmental conditions that prevail as they form. To better assess the environmental controls on the resource potential of ferromanganese deposits, we have undertaken a detailed study of the chemical composition of ferromanganese nodules and one crust sample from different oceanic regions. Textural and chemical characteristics of nodules from the North Atlantic and a crust from the South Pacific suggest that they acquire metals from a hydrogenous source. These deposits are potentially an economically important source of Co and the REY. On the other hand, nodules from the Pacific Ocean represent a marginal resource of these metals, due to their relatively fast growth rate caused by diagenetic precipitation. By contrast, they have relatively high concentrations of Ni and Cu. A nodule from the Arctic Ocean is characterised by the presence of significant quantities of detrital silicate material, which significantly reduces their metal resource. View Full-Text
Keywords: polymetallic nodules; deep sea mining; ferromanganese crusts; diagenesis; Arctic nodules polymetallic nodules; deep sea mining; ferromanganese crusts; diagenesis; Arctic nodules
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This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited. (CC BY 4.0).

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Menendez, A.; James, R.; Shulga, N.; Connelly, D.; Roberts, S. Linkages between the Genesis and Resource Potential of Ferromanganese Deposits in the Atlantic, Pacific, and Arctic Oceans. Minerals 2018, 8, 197.

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