Mineralogical Characteristics of the Nickel Laterite, Southeast Ophiolite Belt, Sulawesi Island, Indonesia
With the sharp decrease of sulfide nickel resources, the nickel laterite is becoming more attractive as nickel oxide, nickel matte, and nickel-iron. This study investigated the mineral phase structure, chemical analysis, thermal properties, and element distribution characteristics of the rotten rock layer deposited in the Southeast Sulawesi Ophiolite Belt. The results show that the nickel laterite deposited in Southeast Sulawesi Island, Indonesia, belongs to the typical high-nickel and low-iron garnierite-type laterite. The concentrations of nickel and iron of the nickel laterite are 1.99 wt% and 17.55 wt%, respectively. The serpentine, olivine, clay, chlorite, hematite, and magnetite are the major minerals, and the pyroxene, actinolite, limonite, and chromite are the minor minerals in the nickel laterite in Southeast Sulawesi, Indonesia. Serpentine and olivine are the main nickel minerals with an average nickel concentration of 3.65 wt% and 1.73 wt%, respectively. The Fe and Ni have homogeneity and symbiosis in the serpentine and olivine, and their concentrations are often positively correlated.
KeywordsNickel laterite Mineralogical analysis Sulawesi Serpentine Olivine
The authors wish to acknowledge the contributions of associates and colleagues at Anhui University of Technology.
The authors acknowledge the financial support of the National Key Research and Development Program of China (2017YFB0603800 and 2017YFB0603802) and the National Natural Science Foundation (51604049).
Compliance with Ethical Standards
Conflict of Interest
The authors declare that they have no conflict of interest.
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