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 Research Themes in

Economic Geology

Prof. Maria Boni (Responsible), Dr. Giuseppina BalassoneDr. Nicola Mondillo, Dr. Licia Santoro, Dr. Giuseppe Arfé
The main themes of the Research Unit in Economic Geology of the University of Napoli are the following:
1)    Base metals deposits (MVT, SEDEX, hydrothermal s.l.);
2)    Nonsulfide Zn-Pb-Ag-V deposits;
3)    Bauxite deposits;
4)    Hydrothermal fluid flow and dolomitization;
5)    Rare Earths (REE) deposits in weathering and hydrothermal environments;
6)    Archaeometry of metal sources in pre-Roman and Roman age.
In the last 10 years the research of the Unit was mainly devoted to the geological-mineralogical characterization of the Zn-Pb(Ag)-V Non Sulfide deposits, of both hypogene (hydrothermal) and supergene origin.
With the help of PhD and Master students, and with the collaboration of foreign Research Centers and Mining Companies, we studied the European Non Sulfide deposits, as the “Calamine” in Sardinia, Belgium, Ireland and Poland. The next step was the study of the Proterozoic willemite deposits of Namibia and Zambia, and their analogues in western Botswana.
Also several other projects on sulfides and nonsulfides have been carried out, as those in Iran (Angouran), in Yemen (Jabali), in Turkey (Hakkari) and Peru (Accha and Yanque). The results of the study on these deposits are part of several Master and PhD Theses, and have been published on international journals (cfr. References). Currently, a project on Non Sulfide deposits of Alaska (Reef Ridge), and another on the supergene alteration of the gold/silver Capricornio deposit in Chile are still in operation. 
We carry out our study with the usual geological, mineralogical and geochemical methods. To these we added several types of isotope analyses for the determination of the nature of the mineralizing fluids, and to date the mineralization phases. In more recent years, in collaboration with the Camborne School of Mines (UK), we have developed the QEMSCAN analytical technology, in order to determine the quantitative mineralogy of the deposits.
The Archaeometry studies are ongoing, in collaboration with the Soprintendenze Archeologiche della Campania.
Most recently, we have started to characterize the REE (Rare Earth) content in bauxite deposits and hydrothermal veins.







Main active collaborations::

Soprintendenze Archeologiche della Campania

Isotopenlabor, Universität Bern (Svizzera)
Geologisch-Paläontologisches Institut Universität Heidelberg (Germania) Technische Universität München (Germania)
Department of Mineralogy Bergakademie Freiberg (Germania)
Royal Belgian Institute of Natural Sciences, Bruxelles (Belgio)               
Natural History Museum Londra (UK)
Camborne School of Mines University of Exeter (UK)                                       
ZincOx Resources plc. London (UK)
Doyon Ltd. Alaska (USA)
Zincore Metals Inc. Vancouver (Canada)
Curtin University of Technology Perth (Australia)
CSIRO Earth Science and Resource Engineering (Australia)
Geological Survey Namibia
Geological Department Università di Shiraz (Iran)
Skorpion Zinc, Vedanta Resources (Namibia)
BONI M., GILG H.A., BALASSONE G., SCHNEIDER J., ALLEN C.R. & MOORE F. (2007) - Hypogene Zn carbonate ores in the Angouran deposit, NW Iran. Mineralium Deposita, v. 42(8), 799-820.
BONI M., TERRACCIANO R., EVANS N., LAUKAMP C., SCHNEIDER J. & BECHSTÄDT T. (2007) - Genesis of vanadium ores in the Otavi Mountainland (Namibia). Economic Geology, v. 102(3), 441-469.
BALASSONE G., ROSSI M., BONI M., STANLEY G. & McDERMOTT P. (2008) - Mineralogical and geochemical characterization of Nonsulfide Zn-Pb mineralization at Silvermines and Galmoy (Irish Midlands). Ore Geology Reviews, v. 33,168-186.
COPPOLA V., BONI M., GILG H.A., BALASSONE G., & DEJONGHE L. (2008) - The Calamine Nonsulfide Zn-Pb deposits of Belgium: petrographical, mineralogical and geochemical characterization. Ore Geology Reviews, v. 33, 187-210.
GILG H.A., BONI M., HOCHLEITNER R., & STRUCK U. (2008) - Stable isotope geochemistry of carbonate minerals in supergene oxidation zones of Zn-Pb deposits. Ore Geology Reviews, v. 33, 117-133.
SCHNEIDER J., BONI M., LAUKAMP C., BECHSTÄDT T., & PETZEL V. (2008) - Willemite (Zn2SiO4) as a possible RbSr geochronometer for dating nonsulfide Zn-Pb mineralization: Examples from the Otavi Mountainland (Namibia). Ore Geology Reviews, v. 33, 152-167.
BALASSONE G., BONI M., DI MAIO G., & VILLA I.M. (2009) - Characterization of metallic artefacts from the Iron Age culture in Campania (Italy): a multi-analytical study. Periodico di Mineralogia, v. 78(1), 45-63.
COPPOLA V., BONI M., GILG H.A, & STRZELSKA-SMAKOWSKA B. (2009) - Nonsulfide zinc deposits in the Silesia-Cracow district, Southern Poland. Mineralium Deposita, v. 44 (5), 559-580.
BONI M., BALASSONE G., ARSENEAU V., & SCHMIDT P. (2009) - The nonsulfide zinc deposit at Accha (Southern Peru): geological and mineralogical characterization. Economic Geology, v. 104(3), 267-289.
BONI M., MONDILLO N., BALASSONE G. (2011) - Zincian dolomite: A peculiar dedolomitization case? Geology, v. 39(2), 183-186.
BONI M., TERRACCIANO R., BALASSONE G., GLEESON S.A., MATTHEWS A.H. (2011) - The carbonate-hosted willemite prospects of the Zambezi Metamorphic Belt (Zambia). Mineralium Deposita, v. 46(7), 707-729.
ROLLINSON G.K., ANDERSEN J.C., STICKLAND R.J., BONI M., FAIRHURST R. (2011) - Characterisation of Nonsulphide Zinc Deposits using QEMSCAN. Minerals Engineering, v. 24, 778–787.
MONDILLO N., BONI M., BALASSONE G., GRIST B. (2011) - In search of the lost zinc: a lesson from the Jabali  (Yemen) Nonsulfide zinc deposit. Journal of Geochemical Exploration, v. 108, 209-219.
BONI M., REDDY S.M., MONDILLO N., BALASSONE G., TAYLOR R. (2012) - A distant magmatic source for Cretaceous karst bauxites of Southern Apennines (Italy), revealed through SHRIMP zircon age dating. Terranova, v. 24, 326-332.
BONI M., MONDILLO N., BALASSONE G., JOACHIMSKI M., COLELLA A. (2013) - Zincian dolomite related to supergene alteration in the Iglesias mining district (SW Sardinia). International Journal of Earth Sciences, v. 102, 61-71.
SANTORO L., BONI M., HERRINGTON R., CLEGG A. (2013) - The Hakkari nonsulfide Zn-Pb deposit in the context of other Nonsulfide Zn-Pb deposits in the Tethyan Metallogenetic Belt of Turkey. Ore Geology Reviews, v. 53, 244-260.
BONI M., ROLLINSON G., MONDILLO N., BALASSONE G., SANTORO L. (2013) - Quantitative mineralogical characterization of karst bauxite deposits in the southern Apennines, Italy. Economic Geology, v. 108, 813-833.
LAPPONI F., BECHSTÄDT T., BONI M., BANKS D., SCHNEIDER J. (2014) - Hydrothermal dolomitization in a complex geodynamic setting (Lower Paleozoic, Northern Spain). Sedimentology, v. 61, 411-443.
MONDILLO N. BONI M., BALASSONE G., JOACHIMSKY M., MORMONE A. (2014) - The Jabali nonsulfide Zn-Pb-Ag deposit, western Yemen. Ore Geology Reviews, v. 61, 248-267.
MONDILLO N., BONI M., BALASSONE G., VILLA I.M. (2014) - The Yanque Prospect (Peru): from polymetallic Zn-Pb mineralization to a Nonsulfide deposit. Economic Geology, v. 109, 1735-1762.
BONI M. & MONDILLO N. (2015) - The “Calamines” and the “Others”: The great family of supergene nonsulfide zinc ores. Ore Geology Reviews, v. 67, 208-233.