MINERAL RESOURCES OF AZERBAIJANThe territory of the Republic of Azerbaijan which encompasses eastern portion of the Major and Minor Caucasus mountain ranges is distinguished with its complex geological structure, diversity and manifoldness of minerals.
The territory of the Republic of Azerbaijan which encompasses eastern portion of the Major and Minor Caucasus mountain ranges is distinguished with its complex geological structure, diversity and manifoldness of minerals.
Azerbaijan had been known as an oil land for ancient times. In this regard oil was extracted in Absheron peninsula in the 7-6 centuries BC according to the historical data.
Furthermore, discovery of paraphernalia and ornaments that were confirmed unambiguously to be prepared from local raw materials indicates implementation of mining works before Christ. Historical sources belonging to the medieval period report existence and exploitation of copper, gold, silver, lead mines in Azerbaijan. Hence interest to geological investigation of the natural oil displays, oilfields, and oil and gas-bearing regions of Azerbaijan increased due to enhancement of oil use scope, and consequently determination of perspective with regard to other minerals of the area remained in the background to some extent.
It shouldn’t be ruled out that in general the territory of the Republic of Azerbaijan was geologically examined insufficiently until the twenties of the last century.
From the forties of 19th century till the twenties of the 20th century German, Russian, and partly local industrialists carried out exploitation and research works in Dashkasan cobalt, as well as Gadabay, Bittibulag and Balakan copper deposits.
During 1867-1914 the German firm «Siemens» extracted 56000 tons of copper (according to approximate estimations 6.3-12.7 tons of gold, and 120.6-126.1 tons of silver) from Gadabay deposit; 16000 tons of copper ore containing 2% copper from Bittibulag deposit; as well as 608 tons of cobalt ore consisting of 10-18% cobalt from Dashkasan cobalt deposit and took them to Germany.
In early 20th century another German firm «Vagow» conducted exploration and exploitation of non-ferrous deposits in Balakan region, processed in situ the produced ores from Jikhikh and Kohnamadan deposits, and sold the obtained copper to local businessmen.
During 1862-72 saltpetre producing fabric operated in Tumbul village situated not far from Nakhichevan city. Shan Girem in eighties of 19th century, and Englishmen named Atterton in 1914 spearheaded brimstone producing fabric in accordance with the base of Gomur sulphur field (Nakhichevan AR).
Expedient research of the territory of Azerbaijan started from thirties of 20th century, various industrially significant iron, molybdenum, cobalt, polymetal deposits were revealed in a short time and involved to exploitation.
During the years of Great Patriotic War geological exploration works were directed mostly to research of defensively essential mineral reserves. Henceforth exploitation works were started in Paragachay molybdenum deposit, and extraction process was accelerated in operated Northern Dashkasan deposit in 1939. Generally, 60% of produced cobalt in USSR during 1941-45 fell to the share of Azerbaijan.
Copper production was organized in Gadabay mine.
Implementation and putting into use of exploration works were intensively continued in non-ferrous deposits (gunpowder, sulphuric pyrite, kaolin, fireproof clay and etc.) for needs of Azerbaijan oil industry which held 75% of erstwhile fuel-lubricants produced within the commonwealth.
Later involvement of Dashkasan iron ore and Zaylik alunite deposit to exploitation resulted with the establishment of mining industry in Azerbaijan.
The Ministry of Ecology and Natural Resources founded reliable basis that provided stable progress of several spheres based on use of mineral reserve of the Republican economy and increasing requirement needs of mineral raw material.
Exploitation works were carried out in the ore deposits regarding Dashkasan iron ore, Zaylik alunite, Gumushlu, Agdara polymetal, Paragachay molybdenum ore deposits until the nineties of the last century.
Mineral raw resources play quite significant role in technical-economical and social development of society being intricate natural product.
Therefore significance of mineral reserves in modern world proliferates incessantly.
Mineral reserves in bowels are one of the main factors identifying economic and social-political independence of the country being content of common natural resources.
Enhancement of economic potential of the Republic of Azerbaijan is connected with prolific use of resources of various mineral deposits completed of exploration in its territory, as well as improvement of mining and processing spheres.
In addition to mineral deposits confirmed of industrial reserves and registered in state balance, research and geological-exploration works were implemented regarding number of ore displays, and their basic reserves were evaluated. Brief information on main deposits is provided below.
1. FERROUS METALS
Iron ores are considered one of the main bulwarks of industry and economic development to this day. Currently trustworthy mineral raw basis has been established in the area of Azerbaijan by confirmation of industrially significant reserves of 3 ore deposit. All of them are located in Dashkasan ore region and represented with Dashkasan, Southern Dashkasan, and Damir cobalt magnetite deposits.
It should be mentioned that Dashkasan group deposits (Dashkasan, Southern Dashkasan, Damir) had peculiar roles in the mineral raw basis of the Republic for long years. Azerbaijan ore-dressing group of enterprises operated in the basis of these deposits and its product (iron concentrate) completely met the needs of Georgia’s Rustavi metallurgy group of enterprises. In case operation of Dashkasan ore-dressing group of enterprises is restored in the near future, it will be provided with trustworthy reserve for 70-80 years.
As a result of geological-research works implemented in 1960-1964 Goydara group chromite ore displays were revealed in the area of Kalbajar region, while Ipak group chromite ore displays were discovered in the territory of Lachin region.
Goydara chromite displays group – is located in the watershed of Istibulagsu river, 21 km north-west of Kalbajar region center.
Its chromite mineralization functioned in the dissemination zone of lenticular dunite masses and was followed in the distance of more than 350 m. Ore bodies are represented with elliptic and lenticular morphologic burrows isolated from each other.
Their thickness is from 0.5 m to 15 m. The amount of chromium oxide in the content of ore is (Cr2O3) 43.5-52.6%; Cr2 O3: FeO – ratio is between 3.5-4.0 which absolutely meets the needs of industry.
Ipak chromite displays group – is situated near Ipak village of Lachin region. Here chromite mineralization has also spread in dunite lenses located inside hyperbasites. Chromite mineralization holds nodular texture; thickness of several lenses is about 0.5 m to 3-5 m. The amount of chromium oxide in lenses contains (Cr2O3) – 25.0-39.5%. Diffusion area of chromium mineralization in this region is up to 500 square km.
II. NON-FERROUS AND RARE METALS
Non-ferrousmetals regardingcopper, lead, zinc, cobalt, mercury, antimony ores deposits and displays are widespread in metallogenic provinces of Major and Minor Caucasus’s Azerbaijan portion centered mostly in Balakan-Zaqatala, Gadabay and Ordubad ore regions.
Copper reserves of the Republic are focused mostly in Balakan-Zaqatala, Gadabay, Qarabag and Ordubad ore regions. Basic copper reserves in Balakan-Zaqatala ore region are centered in copper-pyrite, pyrite-polymetal type deposits and displays, while in ore regions of Minor Caucasus and Nakhichevan rugged zone they are focused in mostly copper-porphyry, molybdenum-copper-porphyry and gold-copper-pyrite type fields and displays.
There is the only copper-porphyry deposit confirmed of industrial reserves (Qaradag copper-porphyry deposit) in the Republic which holds 4.7% of total ore reserves.
Industrial reserves of copper in Balakan-Zaqatala ore region in three pyrite-polymetal deposits-huge Filizchay, middle scale Kasdag and Katekh deposits were confirmed and registered in state balance of mineral deposits. Reserves of Sagator copper-zinc, Mazimchay copper-pyrite and Ashagi Karabchay pyrite-polymetal deposits evaluated with C2 category were registered in the area balance and their prognostic reserves were estimated.
Industrial reserves of copper in Minor Caucasus were confirmed in Qizilbulag gold-bearing copper-pyrite deposit and partly in Vejnali gold deposit located in Qarabag ore region along with Qaradag copper-porphyry deposit.
Reserves of iron-bearing copper-porphyry deposit in Qarabag ore region, and Gadabay copper-pyrite deposit in Gadabay ore region were evaluated and their prognostic reserves were estimated.
Copper reserves in Goydag, Diakhchay, Misdag-Shalala copper-porphyry, Agyurd gold, Nasirvaz-Agdara polymetal deposits in Nakhichevan rugged zone were evaluated, registered in the area balance and their prognostic reserves were estimated.
Copper deposits of Minor Caucasus are centered mostly in Gadabay ore region. Predominantly copper-porphyry, and partly copper-pyrite deposits have developed in this region.
Preliminary exploration of central part of Qaradag copper-porphyry deposits in Gadabay region was carried out and their reserves were allocated to area balance.
Gadabay ore region is one of the most perspective regions in terms of geological-structural system, intensity of geophysical and geochemical anomalies, as well as richness of copper-porphyry, copper-pyrite, copper-gold ores.
Qarabag ore region has high perspective for copper mineralization. Mainly copper-porphyry, gold-copper-pyrite and other geological-industrial mineralization types are widespread in this ore region. Precise exploration of Qızılbulag gold-copper-pyrite deposit was entirely completed and its industrial reserves were taken to state balance. The deposit is located in Agdara region. Average amount of copper contains 1.38%.
Qoshgarchay and Qoshgardag territories that have perspective for copper-porphyry, and copper-pyrite ores were revealed in Dashkasan ore region.
Formerly ore-dressing mine operated in Ordubad ore region in the territory of Nakhichevan AR confirmed of reserves, based on Paragachay copper-molybdenum deposit and of the same name with it. Lately needs of the enterprise were met due to poor ores and it discontinued its operation completely after it was blockaded by Armenia. Continuation of exploitation exploration and planned research works on the deposit are considered essential for its equipment with reliable raw material.
Ordubad ore region which is located in Miskhana-Zangazur metallogenic square is deemed to have high perspective for discovery of industrially significant copper fields in Nakhichevan rugged zone. As a result of researches implemented lately in this region, numerous copper-molybdenum displays were revealed in Paragachay, Misdag, Goydag, Gyoygyol, Shalala, Diakhchay, Kotam-Kilit ore fields. Moreover, Eocene aged prognostic resources are expected in considerable amount of hydrothermally changed rocks within the volcano-plutonic complex in Khanaga-Ordubad mineralization area of Julfa region.
2.2. Lead and zinc
The polymetal ore deposits confirmed of reserves are the followings: Filizchay, Kasdag, Katekh, Mehmana and Gumushluk.
Lead reserves of Shakarbay polymetal ore deposit in Qazakh ore region of Minor Caucasus and Nasirvaz-Agdara polymetal ore deposits in Ordubad ore region of Nakhichevan were evaluated and their prognostic resources were estimated.
Exact exploration of Filizchay pyrite-polymetal deposit which is considered the hugest deposit in Europe and included to the largest fields of the world was completed and its industrial reserves were confirmed.
The deposit possesses 95 ml tons of ore reserve containing the unique compact ore mass.
The basic precious components of ore estimated of industrial reserves are copper (average amount is 0.59%), zinc (3.63%), lead (1.43%), silver (44.2 g/t), bismuth, cadmium, cobalt, selenium, tellurium, indium and etc.
Technological features of ores were studied on 34 lab tests (weight up to 7 tons) and 2 half-industry tests (weight up to 1-3.6 thousand tons) and as a result of obtainment of lead-zinc, copper and pyrite concentrates and their metallogenic processing in ore-dressing fabric acquirement of end product-metals was recommended.
Reserves of Filizchay deposit are able to supply highly profitable operation of mining enterprise for more than 60 years. Exploitation of the deposit is considered to be carried out in subsoil method.
Relatively small scale Kasdag and Katekh polymetal, Sagator copper-zinc and Mazimchay copper-pyrite ore fields of which accurate exploration works were done, confirmed and evaluated of industrial reserves are located around Filizchay deposit. These deposits are considered as supplementary raw material bases of deemed mine-metallurgy complex.
Settlement of complex environmental problems, safety issues of environment as a whole should not be excluded from agenda. Above all more cutting-edge processing technology should be implemented, and technical-economic substantiation of future technical equipment, energy carriers, materials and services based on the current world market prices should be reestablished related with the necessity of protection of Zaqatala nature reserve, and exploitation of Filizchay deposit.
Lead and zinc mineralization in the Minor Caucasus territory has spread in veinal mass form and establishes not such vast deposits. One of these deposits is Mehmana field which was revealed in Qarabag ore region, 25 km south-west of the region center Agdara city. The predominant reserves of the deposit (nearly 80%) are collected in 3 basic streaks. Their length is from 100 m to 1500 m, thickness is from 0.4 m to 0.85 m, average amount of lead in the content of ore is 6.87%; zinc is 2.9%. Besides the abovementioned elements, high amount of silver, cadmium, gold, selenium and tellurium was noted in the ore composition.
Lead-zinc deposits confirmed of industrial reserves in Nakhichevan AR territory are situated in Sharur and Ordubad regions.
Gumushluk mine with the daily power of 50 tons of ore operated in Sharur region since 1952. The main useful components of the deposit are lead and zinc, while adjoining components are cadmium, gallium, and silver. Industrially significant reserves in the first, second, and third areas of the deposit were totally exploited. Lately meager ores were extracted in the mine.
Zinc reserves in Sagator copper-zinc deposit of Balakan-Zaqatala ore region, and Nasirvaz-Agdara polymetal deposits of Nakhichevan AR were evaluated, accepted to area balance and their prognostic reserves were estimated.
Industrial reserves of cobalt confirmed and registered in state balance are collected in Dashkasan ore region - «Hamamchay» and «Damir» iron ore regions, Balakan-Zaqatala ore region – Filizchay pyrite-polymetal deposit.
It should be noted that, more than 30 ml tons of wastes piled in the valley of Qoshqarchay for a long time during exploitation of Dashkasan deposit, in which considerably precious cobalt exists.
Nevertheless the reason of non-extraction of cobalt from iron ores and its cumulation as a waste is explained with non-existence of certain technology, the main cause was pertaining of iron ore to the Ferrous Metallurgy Administration and cobalt ore to the Non-ferrous Metallurgy Administration respectively of the USSR Non-ferrous Metallurgy Ministry. One fact is sufficient to mention that, during the Second World War exploitation problem of Northern Dashkasan cobalt deposit was solved in a short time and roughly 40-45% of cobalt needs of the USSR was provided with this deposit within the period of war.
Cobalt fields estimated of reserves in Minor Caucasus region exist only in Dashkasan ore region regarding «Southern Dashkasan», «Hamamchay» and «Damir» deposits. However exploitation of reserves of «Northern Dashkasan» cobalt deposit in Dashkasan ore area remains unfinished.
Mineralization of cobalt in «Hamamchay» deposit is noted in 2 forms – particular cobalt mineral in form of glaucodot minerals of cobalt and cobalt-bearing pyrite in the content of magnetite ore in form of porous and veinlet.
Cobalt in «Damir» deposit is located in the composition of magnetite ores in the form of cobalt-bearing pyrite.
The amount of cobalt connected with free cobalt minerals holds 0.139% in «Southern Dashkasan» iron ore deposit. Average amount of its part related with cobalt-bearing pyrite is 0.025%.
Cobalt reserves related with magnetite ore can be taken only during iron ore exploitation in these areas.
As a result of erstwhile geological-research works implemented in Ordubad ore region, several copper-cobalt displays were discovered, of which the Kotam and Kilit displays are considered the most interesting ones.
Kotam copper-cobalt display is situated in 2.5 km north-east of Kotam village. Mineralization zone in depth of 20-80 m is seen in 2.5 km distance on Earth. Mineralization holds veinlet-porous texture and contains chalcopyrite-pyrite. The amount of cobalt within mineralization changes between 0.06%-0.3%, nickel-0.1%, copper-0.3-1.12%.
Kilit copper-cobalt display is located in Kotam ore region, is composed of mineralization zones in veinlet-porous form, and contains cobalt, nickel preserving pyrite-chalcopyrite. Mineralization zones are seen in the thickness of 3-8.6 m from the distance of 20 m to 1000 m. Average amount of elements is as follows: cobalt-0.028-0.115%, copper-0.07-0.43%.
Necessity of establishment of raw material base for high quality steel production in the Republic makes it requisite for implementation of geological-research works on cobalt ore in future. As a result of exploration works carried out in the flanks of «Northern Dashkasan» cobalt deposit of which reserves were formerly exploited since 1993, parameters of widely used zones were determined and high quantity of cobalt over these zones was defined for the first time (in thickness of 4 m-0.41%, and in thickness of 1.25 m-0.37%).
Reserves of molybdenum registered in state balance are centered in Paragachay deposit (alongside Qapijiq area) of Ordubad ore region.
As contiguous component molybdenum reserves were evaluated, admitted to area balance, and their prognostic resources were estimated in Gyoydag, Diakhchay, Misdag-Shalala copper-porphyry deposits in Ordubad ore region of Nakhichevan rugged zone and in Damirli copper-porphyry deposit in Qarabag ore region of Minor Caucasus.
2.5. Aluminium raw
As a result of erstwhile geological-research works carried out in the territory of the Republic Zaylik alunite ores were discovered and explored. The deposit is located in Dashkasan region, 18 km east of Qushchu bridge. Alunite ores are widespread in Jurassic volcanic sediments and are represented with schistous two ore layer. Ores consist mainly of alunite and quartz. The amount of alunite oscillates between 10-80%, and average quantity is 53% over the deposit.
Alunite ores possess 29.7% of the total ore reserves within the Republic.
Zaylik alunite field has been exploited since 1964 as a mineral raw material base of Ganja loam group of enterprises. Each year 200 thousand tons of loam, 385 thousand tons of sulphate acid, potassium fertilizer were obtained from alunite, and were sent to Krasnoyarsk and Irkutsk aluminum factories at that time.
One of the striking factors of this deposit is the existence of vanadium and gallium metals in the content of alunite ores able to be used in nuclear reactors, aircraft technics and rocketry, and alloy compounds.
Quicksilver deposit of which industrial reserves were registered in state balance is Levchay deposit located in Kalbajar ore region. Reserves of another mercury deposit in the region were depleted due to exploitation.
Besides these deposits reserves of Narzanli, Saribulag, Chilgazchay, Qamishli, and Shorbulag mercury deposits in Kalbajar ore region of Minor Caucasus were evaluated, registered in area balance, and their prognostic resources were estimated.
Levchay quicksilver deposit – is situated in 15-20 km north-west of Lev village of Kalbajar region. Ore masses are located inside Cretaceous carbonate rocks in lenticular form. Length of ore masses is from 20 m to 70 m, while thickness is from 2.5 m to 6.5 m. Average amount of mercury in the composition of ore vacillates between 0.261 and 0.497%.
Agyatag quicksilver deposit – is located in 12-15 km east, south-east of Kalbajar town. The deposit was exploited by Shorbulag mining enterprise until 1984. Average quantity of mercury in the content of ore is 0.3%.
Chilgazchay quicksilver deposit - is situated near Alakchi village of Lachin region. Mercury mineralization is located inside crumbled, quartz santon aged rocks. The fundamental mineral of quicksilver viz. vermilion is spread irregularly inside ore-bearing rocks in the form of several burrows, separate parts and veinlets.
Narzanlı deposit - is situated not far from Kalafalig village of Lachin region. The basic mineral of mercury viz. vermilion is located inside limestone in the form of several lenses, burrows, and veinlets.
III. FINE METALS
The territory of Azerbaijan has great perspective for establishment of durable and long term gold mining industry. Numerous gold deposits and displays (both particular gold, and in complex with other metals) discovered during the last decades confirms it, for they hold a bit number of gold mineralization prognosticated in potential ore-bearing regions.
Gold deposits and displays can be divided into two groups. The first group includes fundamental gold deposits revealed in direct formation area in mountain rocks. The second group consists of splattered gold deposits derived from corrosion of fundamental gold deposits, conveying of sediments from them to different distances. Splattered gold deposits are considered economically auspicious because extra technological processing is not required in their use.
On January 1, 2006, reserves of three special gold deposits (Qizilbulag, Vejnali, and Zod (Soyudlu) explored in state balance of Republican mineral reserves and confirmed of industrially significant reserves, as well as gold reserves estimated and confirmed as contiguous components in the ores of Filizchay, Katekh and Kasdag polymetal, Qaradag copper-porphyry deposits were reported.
Furthermore reserves of Qosha, Agyurd, Pyazbashi, Dagkasaman, Gadabay and Agduzdag deposits evaluated with C2 category were registered in area balance.
On August 20, 1997, contract on exploration, use, and share production of Gadabay, Qosha, Ordubad group (Piyazbashi, Agturd, Shakardara, Kalaki), Soyudlu, Qizilbulag, and Vejnali perspective gold deposits between the former “Azerqizil” State Company and “RV Investment Group Services LLC” of the US in accordance with the decree of the President of the Republic of Azerbaijan “on exploration and use of several gold deposits of the Republic of Azerbaijan” dated 5 February, 1996 with the purpose of establishment of gold mining industry in the Republic and additional exploration works have been started since 2005 in deposits excluding Soyudlu (Zod), Qizilbulag and Vejnali fields which are situated in the territories occupied by Armenians and these works are supposed to be finished in 2008.
Qizilbulag deposit – is located in the area of Agdara region, 63 km north-west of Agdama city. Accurate exploration works were conducted in the deposit; their reserves were estimated and confirmed. The field is included to gold-copper-pyrite geological industry type. Ores are consisted mostly of pyrite, chalcopyrite, marcasite, sfalerite, chalcosine, quartz and etc. Average amount of gold in ore is 4.0 g/t, silver – 5.4 g/t, and copper – 1.41 %. Predominant useful components of the deposit are composed of gold, silver and copper, while contiguous components are consisted of selenium, tellurium and sulphur.
Dagkasaman deposit – is situated in central part of Qazakh concavity, 1.5-2 km south of Qazakh city. More than 10 quartz-gold-polymetal veins were discovered in the field. Total length of the zones is about 1300 m. The fundamental components of the deposit are gold, silver, copper, lead, and zinc. The amount of gold in ore content is from 1 g/t to 30 g/t, while silver is from 10 g/t to 50 g/t.
Qosha deposit – is located in western portion of Gadabay ore region, 30 km south of Tovuz city. 9 vascular gold-bearing sulphide zones exist within the deposit. Majority of these zones stretch till the near north-west and meridian, thickness of them is from 2.0 m to 15 m. Thickness of ore masses at these zones holds 0.5-3.0 m. Basic utilitarian components of the field are gold and silver. The quantity of gold at north-western zones is 4-8 g/t; while nearly 10 g/t at meridional zones reaching 1000 g/t in occasional tests. 35.6 % gold-bearing concentrate is obtained by flotation method according to technological scheme made under laboratory condition.
Gadabay deposit – is situated in north-western edge of Gadabay city. Exploitation works were conducted in Gadabay field, and consequently copper, gold, and silver was extracted in large amount from the middle 19th century. In 1990-2001 re-exploration works were carried out, reserves of gold, silver, and copper subsisting in troglodytic wastes, as well as in rooty rocks were estimated with the purpose of determination of remnant reserves of gold and copper in Gadabay deposit.
Zod deposit – is located at the border of Kalbajar region of the Republic of Azerbaijan and Basarkechar (Vardenis) region of the Republic of Armenia. The deposit was revealed in 1951 by «Caucasian-gold-exploration» agency. Although major part of the field is situated in the territory of Kalbajar region, exploration works were implemented by USSR Geology Agency and Armenian Non-Ferrous Metallurgy Agency for unknown reasons. Nevertheless only 7 ore veins of 23 of them belong to the area of Armenia, Zod deposit was exposed to deliberate falsification in geological materials and maps presented by Armenians at the State Reserves Commission operating under erstwhile USSR Soviet of Ministers and subsequently it was accepted that the field totally pertained to Armenia. Exploitation of the deposit was started since 1976.
Vejnali deposit – is situated in Zangilan region, 4-5 km of Agband railway station. The field is included to quartz-gold-sulphide-bearing vascular geological-industrial type. 25 gold-bearing veins were revealed and estimated within the deposit. Industrially significant gold reserves are concentrated in 6 quartz-chalcopyrite, quartz-carbonate-pyrite- chalcopyrite-bearing veins.
Contact of the whole ore veins with neighboring rocks is acute and they are characterized with oscillation of thicknesses from 10 cm to 4.0 m.
Primary useful component in the ore content is gold. Furthermore silver, copper, tellurium, bismute exist in extractable amount in the ore composition. Large scale gold subsists in the ore content. In this regard the amount of «free» gold is 9.8 %, while 85.3 % in compound form.
The ores are purported to be enriched by using gravitation-flotation diagram. 96.52 % gold, 97.38 % silver, 95.9 % tellurium and 65 % bismute is able to be extracted. The deposit was prepared for industrial utilization.
Agyurd deposit – is located in Ordubad region, 40 km north-west of Ordubad city.
The deposit was formed in endocontact of Mehri-Ordubad granitoid tract. Ore masses containing veins and vascular zones are included to gold-sulphide-quartz formation. Main minerals in the ore content are pyrite and chalcopyrite, while inferior minerals include magnetite, pyrrhotite, sfalerite, molybdenite and etc. Gold in the ore content subsists in free form (54 %) and in sulphides (50-55 %). The fundamental utilitarian components are gold, silver and copper.
85% gold can be extracted off the ore once ores will be enriched based on gravitation-flotation scheme.
Pyazbashi deposit – is situated in exocontact of Mehri-Ordubad massif, in paleogenous age sedimentary rocks, 2.0-2.5 km west of Agyurd deposit.
Up to 50 quartz-sulphide veins exist inside the deposit. 5 of them were relatively exactly estimated and have industrial significance. Thickness of the veins vacillates between 0.2 m to 1.5-2.0 m and is composed mostly of quartz and pyrite.
The field will be exploited at single refining fabric according to identical technological scheme along with Agyurd deposit.
Shakardara deposit – is located in 1.8-2.0 km south of Pyazbashi deposit and was explored in 60-100 m depth from earth surface through caves. Basic ore-bearing and ore-storing structure is Nusnus-Kalaki-Mazra depth fragment in north-west direction (2900-3200). It is represented with highly thick quartzose, kaolinic and ironing zones of andesite-bearing lava-pyroclastic rocks.
Ore masses are divided into two morphological types: 1) vascular zones changing between 1000-1200 m in length and 2-5-13-20 m in thickness, and 2) metasomatites strip bearing veinlet-porous sulphide mineralization stretching in the distance of 850-900 m and in volatile thickness (from 90-100 m to 300-350 m).
The basic utilitarian components are gold, silver and copper.
Agduzdag deposit – is situated in south-east of Kalbajar region. Up to 1000 gold-bearing quartz, quartz-carbonate veins exist in the area of the field. Industrially significant gold mineralization was determined in 5 of them. Average amount of gold was 6.72 g/t. Taking into consideration its easy enrichment and gold extraction, as well as possibility of implementation of pile alkalization technology, reserves of the deposit can be increased thrice and four times due to veins and vascular rocks containing comparatively low amount of gold (up to 1.5 g/t).
Chovdar deposit – is located in the territory of Dashkasan region. The gold mineralization was formed in upper bios aged derivative quartzite. Several egresses of this type quartzite were defined in the deposit area. Features of geological structure of the deposit, widespread hydrothermal-changing rocks, as well as existence of gunpowder-polymetal veins, polymetal and copper-sulphide-bearing veinlet-porous mineralization field indicate its high perspective. The amount of gold holds 8-10 g/t on average oscillating in great amplitude (from 1 g/t to100 g/t and more) in «Markaz» ore body limited and explored partially deep area (up to 150 m).
Bashkandchay splatter gold deposit – encompasses 1500 m interval in downstream of Bashkandchay, from its confluence with Alinjachay to Khoshkeshin waterfall in Nakhichevan AR. Industrially significant splatter gold piles were determined in various terrace levels of alluvial and deluvial sediments. The amount of gold in the first terrace level fluctuates between 294-448 mg/m3, while 248-464 mg/m3 in the second terrace level. The amount of gold in deluvial sediments reaches 172-685 mg/m3 in different tests. Taking into account non-opening of bedding surface in which more gold is concentrated in upper terrace levels, it can be considered that the deposit holds more reserves.
Kurakchay splatter gold deposit – is situated in Chaykand-Dozular portion of the same name river in Kurakchay basin. Exploration-assessment works were conducted in the deposit and it was prepared for industrial utilization. Alluvial sediments were limited by adoption of odd quantity-50 mg/m3.
IV. NON-FERROUS RAW MATERIAL AND CONSTRUCTION MATERIALS
As a result of implemented geological-surveys various non-ferrous mineral and building-construction materials deposits were discovered in several regions of the Republic.
303 building-construction materials deposits, as well as 59 building stones, 22 facing stones, 95 clays, 10 cement raw materials, 27 construction stones, 71 sand-gravels, 14 sands, 3 bituminous rocks, and 2 perlite and pumice deposits were reported in the State balance of mineral reserves dated January 1, 2006.
Building stone – 59 deposits were reported in the State balance regarding 48 limestone, 9 tuff and tuff sandstone, 1 sandstone and 1 travertine deposits.
Facing stone – 22 facing stones, as well as 13 marbled limestones, porphyrites, 2 travertines 1 tuff, 1 gabbro, 1 conglomerate, and 1 tesenit deposit was noted in the State balance.
Clay- Clay deposits efficacious for production of 95 brick-tile, haydite, agloporit and construction ceramics were reported in the State balance.
Cement raw material – 10 cement raw materials deposits were noted in the State balance.
Construction stones – Reserves of 27 construction stones (limestone, road-metal) deposits were reported in the State balance.
Sand-gravel – 70 sand-gravel compound deposits were noted in the State balance.
Sand – Reserves of 14 sand deposits were reported in the State balance.
Bituminous sands – 3 deposits were noted in the State balance. The amount of bitumen in the field rocks oscillates between 7.5-8.1 %.
Perlite, pumice – 2 deposits were noted in the State balance. Non-ferrous raw material reserves are represented with 31 fields in the State balance.
Gypsum, anhydride, alabaster – 7 deposits (5 alabaster, 2 plaster and anhydride) were reported in the State balance including Yukhari Agjakand gypsum and anhydride, Arazin plaster, Ganja, Tartar and Minbashli alabaster fields.
Bentonite clays – 2 bentonite clay deposits reported of reserves subsists in the State balance regarding Dash Salahli and Khanlar fields. As a result of geological-exploration works implemented in recent years considerable reserves of bentonite clays were revealed in Shamakhi-Qobustan zone, and industrially significant reserves of Baylar deposit were estimated. Dash Salahli bentonite deposit is in exploitation.
Sodium chloride – 4 sodium chloride deposits (Nakhichevan, Nehram, Shakarabad-Qoshadiza rock salt and Masazir halite) were noted in the State balance. Nakhichevan rock salt and Masazir halite deposits are exploited.
Dolomite – 2 dolomite deposits were reported in the State balance including Nehram and Kechiqaya fields with vast reserves.
Quartzite – 2 quartzite deposits for dinas were noted in the State balance regarding Qizilja deposit in Khanlar region and Chovdar deposit in Dashkasan region. Both of the deposits are in reserve.
Limestone for flux and soda – 2 deposits were reported in the State balance.
Ceramics raw material – Chovdar pebble deposit which is not exploited was noted in the State balance.
Mineral dye (clayey ochre) – 2 deposits (Chovdar and Mirzik fields) were reported in the State balance, none of them is exploited.
Quartz sands – Reserves of 5 deposits (Hajıvali, Hokmali, Sharqi Zeyid, Yasamal and Zeyid) as raw materials for glass production were noted in the State balance.
Barite – Remnant reserves of Chovdar barite deposit and reserves of Bashqishlaq barite deposit were reported in the State balance. It is raw material used in different spheres of barite industry. But it is mostly utilized in drilling of deep wells as a weight material. Barite surrounds mainly striped area passing through Qarabag, Dashkasan and Gadabay ore regions in north-eastern slope of Minor Caucasus. Numerous displays and 2 deposits were revealed within «Barite strip».
Besides, barite veins evaluated in different levels exist in the territory of Gadabay ore region scoping the area from Hasansu River to Zayamchay.
Pebble – was discovered in Chovdar ore area of Dashkasan ore region. The deposit is located in derivative quartzites derived from upper Bios aged rhyolites. As a result of implemented technological researches it was determined that, raw of Chovdar pebble deposit can be successively used in delicate ceramics production after enrichment process. Exploration works in the deposit were ended and reserves of the field were estimated. Utilization scope of pebble is very extensive. It is able to be used in chemical industry, electroceramics, paper making, construction works, and etc. spheres as a fireproof material.
Brimstone – Reserves of the three sulphur deposits (Chiraqdarasi, Toganali and Chiraqdarasi-Toganali) were reported in the State balance. Furthermore brimstone reserves (common) were estimated in Filizchay, Kasdag and Katekh magnetic pyrite-polymetal and Qizilbulaq gold-bearing copper- magnetic pyrite deposits.
Icelandic spar – numerous veins and burrows of calcite were revealed in Kalvaz-Kalakhan calcitic area of mountainous Talish, volcanogenic-sedimentary derivatives of Kosmolyan floor, Icelandic spars compose its main part. Spar-raw was tested (at the «Spar» expedition of Soyuzkvarssamosvetı GIB), references were given on high quality of monoblocs and crystals. The discovered objects were explored by overhead mountain extractions for about 3 m depth. Icelandic spar is widespread in radio-technics, appliance manufacturing industry and military industry. It is necessary to implement research-assessment works with contiguous production in the area for the purpose of determination of industrial reserve collections of the raw material.
Refractory and hard clays – is widespread in north-eastern slope of Minor Caucasus. Fire-resistant alabasters are mostly used in earthenware utilized in various areas and refractory brick making and are prevalent in the territories of Khanlar, Dashkasan and Qazakh regions. Preliminary exploration of Kotandag fireproof raw material deposit was carried out in the area of Qazakh region, and their reserves were estimated. Reserves of Khoshyal kaolin deposit discovered in Shamkir region were estimated.
Kaolins, kaolinic rocks, and alabasters efficacious for production of refractory wares are widespread in the territory of Nakhichevan AR and their effectiveness was defined for production of somewhat acid-proof sewers was defined for ceramic products, faience for sanitary engineering, and delicate ceramics.
Raw material for Soda, Nehram dolomite deposit contains mainly dolomites, dolomitic limestones. Limestones were explored in Zangilan region and their reserves were confirmed for the purpose of supplying the sodium plant with raw material which was planned to be built in Nakhichevan in previous years.
Natural soda flashes – was determined in central part of Middle Aras depression zone – Sadarak concavity, western portion of Nakhichevan concavity and explored in depth via several research wells. Prognostic resources for natural sodium over Sadarak, Khok-Qarabaglar, Sust-Tazakand and Boyukduz areas were estimated as a result of exploration works.
Raw material for glass production – dolomites of Nehram deposit and Devonian aged derivative quartzites can be used.
The deposit was not involved to industrial exploitation regardless of confirmation of its reserves for utilization in production of colorful glass tare (bottle) (at the active Nakhichevan glass wares and Sumgayit projected glassware plants) in 1984.
Specimens taken from layers with lesser amount of iron oxide within Devonian sedimentary rocks of Frasnian and Famennian stages during research-assessment works conducted in Gumushlu derivative quartzites deposit in 1972-1973 via laboratory-technological researches for the purpose of determination of its efficiency for glass production, and subsequently it was considered useful for glass (tare) making. The deposit has not been involved to utilization.
Zeolites – natural zeoloites are successively used in agriculture like in drying of gases, purification of industrial wastes from harmful compounds, melioration of automobile petrol quality, purification of waters and etc. spheres. Fertility of most plant products was increased due to distribution of zeolite to sowing areas in most countries. Zeolite is added to forage ration of animals and birds in highly agriculturally developed countries such as the US and Japan. Poultry and cattle-breeding complexes and farms abroad are purified with zeolite, which prevents both dust and unpleasant stink. Allocation of zeolite mixed with bird and animal manure to sowing areas as an unparalleled fertilizer solves waste problem once and for all.
Zeolites of Aydag deposit are distinguished among non-traditional raw kinds. The multi-use raw holds rich reserves. Natural zeolites of Aydag deposit is essential in drying of gases, obscuration benzol and water steams off natural gases, as a catalyst in oil-chemical processes, filter in purifiers, filler in production of rubber, plastic mass, paper, admixture cement, detergents and mineral-polymer materials and in medicine. Their utilization areas were determined as inert supplement to forage in melioration of soil quality and improvement of productivity in agriculture, as well as in cattle-breeding and poultry. Currently Aydag zeolite deposit is exploited by «Azerzeolite» Scientific Industrial Union. Zeolite raw material has great exportation potential as well. Zeolites in the territory of Nakhichevan AR were discovered inside volcanogenic-sedimentary rocks belonging to lower and middle Lutetia of middle Eosin, which consists of layer oscillating between the thicknesses of 18-45 m. They are widespread in Ordubad and Shahbuz regions of the Republic and are seen on the earth surface in narrow strip form in the distance of 80-100 km. According to the data taken from preliminary exploration works, the amount of zeolite (montmorillonite) in zeolite-reserving tuffite layer changes between 45-65%.
Oil and gas industry are important. Oil is extracted in onshore field and in the Caspian Sea. The territory of the Republic of Azerbaijan (particularly Absheron Peninsula) is one of the world’s oldest oil-producing regions. In VII-VI centuries Absheron oil had been extracted and transported to many countries.