Skip to main content
U.S. flag

An official website of the United States government

Rhenium Occurrences in the United States

March 26, 2018

This data release provides descriptions of more than 100 mining districts, mines, and mineral occurrences (deposits and prospects) within the United States that are reported to contain enrichments of rhenium (Re). These mineral occurrences include mined deposits, exploration prospects, and other occurrences with notable concentrations of rhenium. The inclusion of a particular mineral occurrence in this database is not meant to imply that it has economic potential. Rather, these occurrences were included to capture the distribution and characteristics of the known, reported rhenium occurrences in the United States. Rhenium is one of the rarest elements in the Earth's crust. Most rhenium occurs in the mineral molybdenite, where the rhenium substitutes for molybdenum. Rhenium is produced as a byproduct from roasting molybdenum concentrates recovered from mining porphyry copper deposits. Because the United States contains many porphyry copper mines and deposits, decisions had to be made by the authors regarding the addition or exclusion of copper and molybdenum deposits in the dataset, based principally on the published descriptions of the occurrence of rhenium in those deposits. The level of detail describing the rhenium occurrence varies widely, ranging from rhenium resources to general descriptions about the occurrence of rhenium. The entries and descriptions in the database were derived from published papers, reports, data, and internet documents, published from 1917 to 2018, representing a variety of sources, including geologic and exploration studies described in State, Federal, and industry reports. Although an attempt was made to capture as many examples as possible, this dataset is a progress report that is part of an ongoing effort. The authors welcome additional published information in order to continually update and refine this dataset.

Related Content