Production of Industrial Raw Materials by Upgrading Feldspathic Sand from a Project Area North of Al Madinah City, Kingdom of Saudi Arabia

SGS-DF-2002-1 Saudi Geological Survey
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ABSTRACT


Among the GCC countries, due to its flourishing ceramics and glass industry, Saudi Arabia is the largest consumer of feldspar. A reconnaissance survey for feldspathic minerals in the Kingdom conducted by BRGM for the Deputy Ministry for Mineral Resources (DMMR) was unable to locate any sizeable or economically viable deposit of feldspar within Saudi Arabia. As a consequence of this survey feldspar exploration focused on other resources, such as weathered pegmatitic granite and the feldspathic sand found in valleys. The feldspathic sand is alluvial in nature and shows moderate reworking that caused a considerable increase in the feldspar content of this material, revealed by the increment of alumina and alkalis in feldspathic sand compared with the in situ, weathered granite/pegmatite (table 1). Granite intrusives in the project area are dominantly coarse grained (pegmatite), leucocratic (light colored), and moderately weathered. Weathered feldspar is relatively fresh (unaltered) and shows little or no decomposition (kaolinization, etc.). A total of 77 samples of fresh (unaltered) granitic pegmatite, weathered granite, and feldspathic sand were collected from an area north of Al Madinah city during the 1999-2000 field season. The objectives of field work was to make a preliminary evaluation of the deposit and to determine the suitability of the material for upgrading and producing industrial raw materials. During the 2001 field season, 180 samples were collected exclusively from trenches dug in the feldspathic sand in and around the project area.

 

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Saudi Geological Survey, 2002, Production of industrial raw materials by upgrading feldspathic sand from a project area north of Al Madinah City, Kingdom of Saudi Arabia: Saudi Geological Survey Data-File Report SGS-DF-2002-1, 7 p., 2 figs., 3 tables (Arabic translation bound in volume)