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Coastal deposits of heavy mineral sands; Global significance and US resources

October 1, 2016

Ancient and modern coastal deposits of heavy mineral sands (HMS) are the principal source of several heavy industrial minerals, with mining and processing operations on every continent except Antarctica. For example, HMS deposits are the main source of titanium feedstock for the titanium dioxide (TiO2) pigments industry, obtained from the minerals ilmenite (Fe2+TiO3), rutile (TiO2) and leucoxene (an alteration product of ilmenite). HMS deposits are also the principal source of zircon (ZrSiO4), from which zirconium dioxide (ZrO2) is obtained for uses mostly in refractory products. Sometimes monazite [(Ce,La,Nd,Th)PO4] is recovered as a byproduct mineral, sought for its rare earth elements and thorium (Ault and others, 2016; Sengupta and Van Gosen, 2016; Van Gosen and Tulsidas, 2016). 

Citation Information

Publication Year 2016
Title Coastal deposits of heavy mineral sands; Global significance and US resources
DOI
Authors Bradley S. Van Gosen, Donald I. Bleiwas, George M. Bedinger, Karl J. Ellefsen, Anjana K. Shah
Publication Type Article
Publication Subtype Journal Article
Series Title Mining Engineering
Series Number
Index ID 70176895
Record Source USGS Publications Warehouse
USGS Organization Central Mineral and Environmental Resources Science Center