Next Article in Journal
The Effect of Inlet Velocity on the Separation Performance of a Two-Stage Hydrocyclone
Next Article in Special Issue
Non-Metamict Aeschynite-(Y), Polycrase-(Y), and Samarskite-(Y) in NYF Pegmatites from Arvogno, Vigezzo Valley (Central Alps, Italy)
Previous Article in Journal
An Experimental Study for the Remediation of Industrial Waste Water Using a Combination of Low Cost Mineral Raw Materials
Previous Article in Special Issue
Geology and Mineralogy of Rare Earth Elements Deposits and Occurrences in Finland
Article Menu
Issue 4 (April) cover image

Export Article

Open AccessFeature PaperArticle

Volcanic-Derived Placers as a Potential Resource of Rare Earth Elements: The Aksu Diamas Case Study, Turkey

The Lyell Centre, British Geological Survey, Research Avenue South, Edinburgh EH14 4AP, UK
Environmental Science Centre, British Geological Survey, Nicker Hill, Keyworth NG12 5GG, UK
Environmental Science Centre, NERC Isotope Geosciences Laboratory, Nicker Hill, Keyworth NG12 5GG, UK
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Minerals 2019, 9(4), 208;
Received: 15 February 2019 / Revised: 22 March 2019 / Accepted: 26 March 2019 / Published: 30 March 2019
PDF [7721 KB, uploaded 30 March 2019]


Rare earth elements (REE) are essential raw materials used in modern technology. Current production of REE is dominated by hard-rock mining, particularly in China, which typically requires high energy input. In order to expand the resource base of the REE, it is important to determine what alternative sources exist. REE placers have been known for many years, and require less energy than mining of hard rock, but the REE ore minerals are typically derived from eroded granitic rocks and are commonly radioactive. Other types of REE placers, such as those derived from volcanic activity, are rare. The Aksu Diamas heavy mineral placer in Turkey has been assessed for potential REE extraction as a by-product of magnetite production, but its genesis was not previously well understood. REE at Aksu Diamas are hosted in an array of mineral phases, including apatite, chevkinite group minerals (CGM), monazite, allanite and britholite, which are concentrated in lenses and channels in unconsolidated Quaternary sands. Fingerprinting of pyroxene, CGM, magnetite and zircon have identified the source of the placer as the nearby Gölcük alkaline volcanic complex, which has a history of eruption throughout the Plio-Quaternary. Heavy minerals were eroded from tephra and reworked into basinal sediments. This type of deposit may represent a potential resource of REE in other areas of alkaline volcanism. View Full-Text
Keywords: rare earth elements; resources; ash-fall; placer; Turkey; alkaline volcanism rare earth elements; resources; ash-fall; placer; Turkey; alkaline volcanism

Graphical abstract

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).

Supplementary material


Share & Cite This Article

MDPI and ACS Style

Deady, E.; Lacinska, A.; Goodenough, K.M.; Shaw, R.A.; Roberts, N.M.W. Volcanic-Derived Placers as a Potential Resource of Rare Earth Elements: The Aksu Diamas Case Study, Turkey. Minerals 2019, 9, 208.

Show more citation formats Show less citations formats

Note that from the first issue of 2016, MDPI journals use article numbers instead of page numbers. See further details here.

Related Articles

Article Metrics

Article Access Statistics



[Return to top]
Minerals EISSN 2075-163X Published by MDPI AG, Basel, Switzerland RSS E-Mail Table of Contents Alert
Back to Top