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Quartzite Solid Mineral Deposits In Nigeria

Quartzite solid mineral deposits in Nigeria, West Africa can be found in Ekiti, Taraba, Kogi, Kwara and Oyo states.

Quartzite is a metamorphic rock that is hard with a non-layered appearance; its colour is of different shades depending on the type of impurity present, when its pink or red, there is a presence of iron oxide (Fe2O3), when its yellow, green, blue and orange other mineral impurities except iron oxide is present, when it is white or grey, then the quartzite is pure.

The formation of quartzite starts when pure quartz sandstone is heated and subjected to pressure forcing its conversion into quartzite, the quartzite with individual quartz grains which is cemented to the sandstone begins to recrystallize along with the former cementing material like iron oxide, silica, carbonate, and clay.

Thus forming a mosaic of quartz crystals which are tightly fitted together making the grainy, sandpaper-like surface to become glassy in appearance, the streaks, and lenses which form within the quartzite is as a result of some of the former cementing materials that migrate during recrystallization and metamorphosis.

Note: even though quartzite is formed from quartz sandstone, they two can still be differentiated, while the fractions of quartzite cut right through the quartz grains when broken, quartz sandstone is broken easily around the grains than through them.

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There have been mining operations going on in this areas of quartzite deposits in Nigeria such as in Itawure situated in Efon Local Government Area of Ekiti state which has commenced the mining operation of the solid mineral in the state as it will help in the state’s economic development and even in creating of job opportunities.

Uses of Quartzite

  • It’s used as railway ballast because of its hard nature.
  • As a decorative stone, it may be used as a wall cover, roofing tiles, flooring, stair steps, also as countertops in kitchens.
  • It is used in glass and silica bricks, paint scouring, soaps, and paper.
  • Pure quartzite is used to produce ferrosilicon, industrial silica sand, silicon and silicon carbide.

Source: finelib

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