Document Type : Original Research Paper


1 Geology Faculty, College of Science, Tehran University, Tehran , Iran

2 Geology Department, Faculty of Natural Sciences, Tabriz University, Tabriz , Iran.

3 Geology Department, Faculty of Sciences, Urmia University, Urmia, Iran.


Boket residual horizon is located in ~15 km northeast of Ajabshir, East-Azarbaijan province. This horizon was developed as stratiform lenses along the contact of Ruteh (middle-upper Permian) and Elika (Triassic) carbonate formations. The ores within this horizon display pelitomorphic, micro-granular, micro-ooidic, pseudo-porphyritic, ooidic, pisoidic, pseudo-breccia, and nodular textures. Based on geochemical data, the ores within this horizon are divided into five types, (1) ferritic  laterite, (2) bauxitic laterite, (3) kaolinitic laterite, (4) ferritic kaolinite, and (5) laterite. Comparison of distribution patterns of elements across a selected profile indicates the effective role of Al and Ti in distributing and concentrating of Zr, Ga, Nb, Th, V, and HREEs within the ores. Incorporation of data obtained from petrographical and geochemical studies shows that the ores have authigenic origin. Furthermore, factors such as chemical variations of weathering solutions, fixation in neomorphic phases, existing in resistant minerals, heterogeneity of protolith, differences in the degree of weathering intensity, and adsorption processes coupled with weak drainage, diagenesis, dynamic pressures, and fluctuation of underground water table played crucial roles in distribution and development of ores within this horizon. The most notable geochemical characteristics of the ores (except in kaolinitic laterite) is the greater mobility of LREEs relative to HREEs during weathering processes. This abnormal behavior within the horizon could be related to factors such as differences in stability of primary minerals containing REEs, the pH variation (from 6.7 to 7.8) of weathering solutions, and moderate degree of evolution of the profile.


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