Lovozero


Thanks to Ragnar Salmén (Oslo), Johann P.Frisch, Steffen Moeckel for informations and specimens and especially Maurice de Graaf and László Horváth for their invaluable work.


Lovozero is a large intrusion on the Kola peninsula in NW Russia. It is situated between Lake Umbozero and Lake Lovozero, located ENE of Khibiny. There is no larger town, only the small town of Revda to the north. It is smaller than Khibiny, about 650 km². There are practically no different mountain ridges, but Lovozero is more or less a flat plateau between 1000 and 400 m above sea level.

The Khibiny-Lovozero pluton is largest in the world (about 2000 km²), it also represents the geological unity with the most mineral species (>500) and is the locality for the largest number of original descriptions (>100). The age of the intrusion is about 350 mio years (Caledonian), it is closely related to the Grampian geosyncline in western Norway and thus connected to the alkaline localities of Scandinavia (see there). The hot spot could be under the NW boundary of Lovozero.

The massif is composed of nepheline syenites, syenites and urtites, to a lesser degree of alkali ultrabasites and carbonatites.

In contrast to Khibiny the geology of Lovozero is relatively simple. During the paleozoic it´s nepheline syenites intruded very old garnet-biotit-gneisses. There are only 3 main rock types: poikilite-feldspar-syenites, differentiated lujaurite-foyaite-urtites (ring structure), and eudialyte-lujaurites. The last often include meter-sized masses of eudialyte. The lujaurite-foyaite-urtite complex consists of more than 200 layers. The poikilite-rocks occur as lenses to 2 km in the two types, the elder containing nosean, the later sodalite. The latter are of greatest mineralogical interest, as they contain the maximum variability of rare element minerals. Alkaline pegmatits occur mainly in the first two rock types. Pegmatites of the eudialyte-lujaurites contain nothing of interest except eudialyte. As with Khibiny, the eastern part of the intrusion is occupied by alkaline volcanic rocks like trachyphonolites, and rhomb porphyries. Alkaline lamprophyres cross all those rocks.

Here, too, the first research was done by W.Ramsay 1887-1898. Fersman did excursion to Lovozero, too, 1920-1923. I could not find data about the beginning of loparite mining here. First excavations were done int he 1940s for uranium. The loparite-concentration reaches up to 8%, and today up to 25,000 tons of loparite-concentrate are mined anually for REE, Nb, and Ta.

At Lovozero, too, there are several mines, and two of these mines have become extremely famous for huge and complex pegmatite veins. These are the Yubileynaya (Jubilee) vein in the Karnasurt mine( 26 x max. 1,6 m, discovered 1970) and the Shkatulka (treasure chest) vein in the Umbozero Mine on Mt. Alluaiv (40x5m, discovered 1990). Yubileynaya alone yielded 12 new mineral species, and Shkatulka is the world´s largest ussingite vein, with f.i. chkalovite-xx to 20cm. Both on Mt.Karnasurt and Mt.Alluaiv there are open pits from loparite mining.

Famous localities of Lovozero are among others:
Mountains:
Alluaiv, Karnasurt, Vavnbed, Flora, Lepkhe (Nelm), Kedykverpakhk, Selsurt
Mines:
Umbozero, Karnasurt
Other:
Ilmajoki river, Chinglusuai river, lake Lovozero

Mineral list (bold = type locality, „not in the Pekov book sometimes means described after publication of the book):
Actinolite
Aegirin
Aenigmatite
Aeschynite-(Ce)
Albite
Allanite-(Ce)
Allophane
Alluaivite
Almandine
Altisite (not in the Pekov book)
Amesite
Analcime
Anatase
Ancylite-(Ce)
Ancylite-(La)
Andalusite
Andesine (not in the Pekov book)
Anglesite
Ankerite (not in the Pekov book)
Annite (not in the Pekov book)
Anorthite
Anorthoclase
Antigorite
Aragonite (not in the Pekov book)
Arctite
Arfvedsonite
Armenite
Arsenopyrite
Astrophyllite
Augite
Autunite

Bari-olgite

Barite
Barytolamprophyllite
Bastnaesite-(Ce)
Beidellite
Belovite-(Ce)
Belovite-(La) (not in the Pekov book)
Belyankinite
Bertrandite
Beryllite
Betafite
Biotite
Birnessite
Boehmite
Bonshtedtite
Bornemanite
Britholite-(Ce)
Brookite
Burbankite
Calcioancylite-(Ce) (with Africanda) (not in the Pekov book)
Calciohilairite
Calcite
Cancrinite
Cancrisilite
Carbonate-fluorapatite
Carbonate-hydroxylapatite
Carbocernaite (not in the Pekov book)
Cassiterite
Catapleiite
Celadonite
Cerianite-(Ce) (not in the Pekov book)
Cerite-(Ce)
Cerussite
Chabazite-Ca

Chabazite-K
Chabazite-Sr
Chalkopyrite
Chamosite
„
Chinglusuite“ probably to be dropped, as no longer a species
Chivruaite

Chkalovite
Chondrodite
Chrysocolla
Clinoptilolite
Cordierite
Corundum
Covellite
Cowlesite
Crandallite
Cristobalite
Cryolite
Cryptomelane
Cubanite
Cummingtonite
Cuprite
Davidite-(Ce)
Diaspore
Diopside
Djerfisherite
Dolomite (not in the Pekov book)
Donnayite-(Y)
Dorfmanite
Eckermannite - reported, but all analysed specimens fluoro-magnesio-arfvedsonite
Elpidite
Epididymite
Epidote
Epistolite
Erdite
Eudialyite
Eudidymite
Fayalite
Ferberite
Ferrocolumbite (not in the Pekov book)
Ferronordite-(Ce)
Ferronordite-(La)

Ferropyrosmalite (not in the Pekov book)
Florencite-(Ce)
Fluorapatite
Fluorapophyllite

Fluorcaphite
Fluorite
Fluor-magnesio-arfvedsonite
Forsterite
Franklinite
Gaidonnayite
Galena
Genthelvite
Georgechaoite (not in the Pekov book)
Gerasimovskite
Gibbsite

Gjerdingenite-Ca
Glaucophane (not in the Pekov book)
Gmelinite-Ca
Gmelinite-K
Gmelinite-Na
Gobbinsite
Goethite
Goetzenite
Gonnardite
Graphite
Grossular
Grumantite
Gypsum (not in the Pekov book)
Halite
Halloysite

Harmotome
Hastingsite
Hedenbergite (not in the Pekov book)
Hematite
Hemimorphite
Heulandite-K
Heulandite-Ca
Heulandite-Sr
Hilairite
Hisingerite
Hollandite
Hornblende
Huttonite
Hydromuscovite (not in the Pekov book)
Hydroxyapophyllite
Hydroxycancrinite
Hydroxylapatite
Ikranite
Ilmajokite
Ilmenite
Ilmenorutile
Intersilite
Jarosite
Kaersutite
Kanemite
Kaolinite
Kapustinite
Karnasurtite-(Ce)
Kazakovite
Keldyshite

Kentbrooksite

"Kentbrooksite-K"
Kogarkoite
Komarovite
Korobitsynite

Krivovichevite
Kukisvumite
Kupletskite
Kuzmenkoite

Kyanite
Labradorite (not in the Pekov book)
Labuntsovite
Lamprophyllite (with Khibiny)
Laplandite-(Ce)

Lanarkite

Laumontite
Lavenite

Leadhillite
Leifite
Lepkhenelmite-Zn

Leucite
Leucophanite
Leucosphenite
Levyne
Lintisite
Litvinskite

Lithiophorite
Loellingite
Lomonosovite
Lomonosovite-ß
Loparite-(Ce)
Lorenzenite/Ramsayite
Lovdarite
Lovozerite

Lueshite
M 24
M 29 (Ce2Si6O15)
M 31 (P-free analog of laplandite-(Ce), Na3CeTiSi6O17*5H2O)
M 32 (Na-Ce-silicate -(Na,Ca,Th,Ti,Si,C)xOy*nH2O)
M 36
M 37
M 54
M 72
Mackinawite
Maghemite
Magnesio-Arfvedsonite
Magnesioferrikatophorite
Magnesioriebeckite
Magnesite
Magnesiumastrophyllite (not in the Pekov book)
Magnetite
Makatite
Malachite
Malinkoite (not in the Pekov book)
Manaksite
Manganbelyankinite
Mangan-neptunite
Manganonaujakasite
Manganonordite-(Ce)
Manganotychite

Marcasite
McKelveyite-(Y) (not in the Pekov book)
Melanterite
Melilite
Mesolite
Microcline
Millerite
Mineevite-(Y)
Molybdenite
Monazite-(Ce)
Monazite-(La)
Montmorillonite
Moraesite
Mosandrite (not in the Pekov book)
Mountainite
Murmanite
Muscovite
Nacaphite (not in the Pekov book)
Nafertisite (not in the Pekov book)
Nahcolite
Nahpoite
Narsarsukite
Nastrophite
Natisite
Natrite
Natrodavyn (not in the Pekov book)
Natrohisingerite (not in the Pekov book)
Natrolite
Natron
Natrophosphate
Natrosilite
Natroxalate
Neighborite
Nenadkevichite
Neotocite
Nepheline
Neptunite
Nickeline
Nioboloparite (not in the Pekov book)
Nitratine (not in the Pekov book)
Nontronite
Nordite-(Ce)
Nordite-(La)

Nordstandite
Normandite
Noseane
Olgite
Olympite
Opal
Organovaite-Mn (not in the Pekov book)
Orthoclase
Palygorskite
Parakeldyshite
Paranatrolite
Paratsepinite-Ba

Pargasite

Pautovite
Pectolite
Penkvilksite
Perovskite
Perrierit
Petarasite (not in the Pekov book)
Phillipsite-K
Phlogopite
Phosinate-(Ce)
Pirssonite
Plumbopyrochlor
Polylithionite
Polyphite
Potassicarfvedsonite
Pyatenkoite-(Y)
Pyrite
Pyrochlore
Pyrolusite
Pyromorphite
Pyrophanite
Pyrrhotite
Quadruphite
Quartz
Raite
Rancieite
Raslakite
Rasvumite
Reedmergnerite
Remondite-(Ce) (not in the Pekov book)
Revdite
Rhabdophane-(Ce)
Rhabdophane-(La)
Rhabdophan-(Nd)
Rhodochrosite
Riebeckite - often reported, but analysed specimens either magnesioarfvedsonite or fluoro-magnesio-arfvedsonite
Rinkite
Romancheite
Rosenbuschite
Rouvilleite
Rutile
Safflorite
Sanidine
Saponite
Sauconite
Sazhinite-(Ce)
Scaopite
Schorl
Searlesite
Seidite-(Ce)
Seidozerite

Sepiolite
Serandite
Shafranovskite
Shcherbakovite
Shkatulkalite
Shomiokite-(Y)
Shortite
Siderite
Sidorenkite
Sillimanite
Silver (not in the Pekov book)
Sinoite-(Ce) certainly an error, no such mineral, but on the market, see Seidite-(Ce) or Phosinaite-(Ce)
Smectite group (not in the Pekov book)
Sobolevite
Sodalite
Sodiumboltwoodite

Sphalerite
Spodumene
Steenstrupine-(Ce)
Stilpnomelane
Strontianite
Strontiopyrochlore
Strontiumapatite
Taeniolite
Takanelite
Talc
Terskite
Tetraferriphlogopit
Tetranatrolite
Thenardite
Thermonatrite
Thomsonite
Thorite
Thorosteenstrupine
Tisinalite
Titanite
Todorokite
Tremolite
Troilite
Trona
Tsepinite-Na

Tugtupite
Tundrite-(Ce)
Tuperssuatsiaite
Ulvoespinel
Umbozerite
Uranpyrochlore
Ussingite
Valleriite
Vernadite
Villiaumite
Vinogradovite
Vishnevite
Vitusite-(Ce)
Vlasovite
Vuonnemite
Vuorijaervite
Wadeite
Wegscheiderite
Woehlerite
Wolframite
Wolalstonite
Wulfenite
Xenotime-(Y)
Yofortierite
Yuksporite
Zakharovite
Zircon
Zirfesite (not in the Pekov book)
Zirkelite
Zirsinalite
Zoisite
Zorite

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&Suggested reading:

By far the utmost and best reading on the Lovozero complex is the fantastic book:
Igor V.Pekov: Lovozero Massif - History, Pegmatites, Minerals
Ocean Pictures Ltd., Moscow, Russia, 2000
It perfectly and in detail describes the geology, the history of study and exploration, even the different pegmatites and gives an up-to-date list of minerals, including type locality species from Lovozero. I find the descriptions of the pegmatites most interesting and impressive, and in fact it is hard to sit still at your desk and not book a trip up there.

Britvin,S.N., G.U.Ivanyuk, V.N.Yakovenchuk: Mineralogische Exkursionen auf der Halbinsel Kola. Laplandia Minerals Ltd., Apatity, 1994, pp.41-66 (in German)

Britvin,S.N., G.U.Ivanyuk, V.N.Yakovenchuk: Mineralogical excursions on the Kola Peninsula. World of Stones, 5-6 (1995), pp.38-46 (the same in English)

Kotrly,M., J.Sejkora: Mineralogische Kostbarkeiten vom Jubilejnaja(Jumbilaeumsgang), Lovozero-Massiv, Halbinsel Kola, Russland. Mineralien-Welt 1/96 (1996), pp.32-42 (in German)

Ivanyuk, G.J., V.N.Yakovenchuk, S.N.Britvin, H.J.Wilke: Seltene Mineralien aus Alkaligesteinen: Das Lovozero-Massiv auf der russischen Kola-Halbinsel. LAPIS 22(1997),4, pp.13-29 (in German)

Semenov, E.: Minerals and ores of the Khibiny-Lovozero alkaline massif, Kola. Russian Academy of Sciences, Ferman Mineralogical Museum, Moscow 1997 (.A handy book on the complicated geology and the most up-to-date mineral list)

Chakmouradian,AR et al.: Fluorcaphite, a second occurrence and detailed structural analysis: simultaneous accommodation of Ca, Sr, Na, and LREE in the apatite atomic arrangement. CANADIAN MINERALOGIST, 43(2005), 735-746

Pekov IV et al.: Pautovite, CsFe2S3, a new mineral species from the Lovozero alkaline complex, Kola Peninsula, Russia. CANADIAN MINERALOGIST, 43(2005), 965-972

New mineral: Crudely prismatic to acicular xx to 120µx15µ, tyüpically as overgrowths on belovite-(Ce). Dark stelle gray, strong metallic luster, dull black upon exposure to moisture. W/belovite-(Ce), villiaumite, aegirine, ussingite, natrosilite, microcline, sodalite, potassicarfvedsonite, sérandite, nordite-(Ce), ferronordite-(Ce), bornemanite, vuonnemite, lomonosovite, vitusite-(Ce), phosinaite-(Ce), barytolamprophyllite, mangan-neptunite, manaksite, chkalovite, kapustinite, kazakovite, steenstrupine-(Ce), thorosteenstrupine, bario-olgite, nalipoite, sphalerite, löllingite, wurtzite, bartonite, chlorbartonite, and zakharovite, among others.

 

Nemeth P et al.: TEM and X-ray study of syntactic intergrowths of epistolite, murmanite and shkatulkalite. CANADIAN MINERALOGIST, 43(2005), 973-987

 

Menshikov YP et al.: Chivruaiite, Ca4(Ti,Nb)5[(Si6O17)2[(OH,O)5]·13?14H2O, a new mineral from hydrothermal veins of Khibiny and Lovozero alkaline massifs. AMERICAN MINERALOGIST, 91(2006), 922-928

New mineral: elongate-prismatic xx to 3mm, transparent, pinkish to colorless, vitreous luster, white streak, distinct cleavage, harness 3. w/microcline, eudialyte, natrolite, astrophyllite, aegirin. From  Chivruai River valley, Lovozero

 

Kartashov PM et al.: Caryochroite, a new heterophyllosilicate mineral species related to nafertisite, from the Lovozero massif, Kola Peninsula, Russia. CANADINA MINERALOGIST, 44(2006), 1131-1339.

New mineral: Na,Sr)3(Fe3+,Mg)10[Ti2Si12O37](H2O,O,OH)17, cm-crusts, hazel brown, brownish yellow streak, dull to waxy luster, hardness 2.5, good cleavage. From the dumps of Umobozero Mine, Mt.Alluaiv, Lovozero, w/albite, elpidite, epididymite, quartz, natrolite, pyrite, galena, sphalerite and bitumen

 

Yakovenchuk VN et al.: Krivovichevite, Pb3[Al(OH)6](SO4)(OH), a new mineral species from the Lovozero alkaline massif, Kola Peninsula, Russia. CANADIAN MINERALOGIST, 44(2006), 451-456

New mineral: From a natrolite-aegirine-orthoclase vein at Mt.Lepkhe-Nelm. Large grains to 1cm w/galen aggregates in natrolite, closrly associated w/nglesite, cerussite, hydrocerussite, leadhillite and lanarkite, and accompanied by anatase, arsenopyrite, fluorapatite, fluorite, halloysite, heulandite-Ca, heulandite-Sr, kupletskite, lamprophyllite, leucophanite, magnesio-arfvedsonite, mangan-neptunite, microcline, monazite-(La), polylithionite, quartz, opal, rhabdophane-(Ce) and titanite. Colorless, transparent, vitreous luster, white streak, no cleavage, hardness 3.

 

Pekov IV et al.: Gjerdingenite-Na and gjerdingenite-Ca, two new mineral species of the labuntsovite group. CANADIAN MINERALOGIST, 45(2007), 529-539

New mineral: K2Ca(Nb,Ti)4(Si4O12)2(O,OH)4•6H2O, from Mt.Karnasurt, fine-ghrained pseudomorphs after vuonnemite and as tabular xx of 0.2x0.3x2mm, transparent as grain, opaque as aggregates, white to pale and pinkish brown. , brittle, no cleavage, hardness 5. W/microcline, natrolite, albite, aegirine, organovaite-Mn, organovaite-Zn, beryllite, epididymite and yofortierite