Antimony Ore

Antimony Ore


any of the natural mineral formations containing antimony in compounds and concentrations that make commercial use technically and economically feasible. Of the antimony ores proper, the major mineral is antimonite (Sb2S3), which contains up to 71.4 percent Sb; in rare cases, antimony ores are represented by complex sulfides of antimony, copper, mercury, lead, and iron (berthierite, jamesonite, tetrahedrite, livingstonite), as well as by oxides and oxychlorides (senarmon-tite, nadorite) of antimony. The content of Sb ranges from 1 to 10 percent in blanket deposits and from 3 to 50 percent in veins, with the average content varying between 5 and 20 percent. Antimony ores are formed through the filling of rock fissures by low-temperature hydrothermal solutions, as well as through the replacement of the solutions by antimony minerals.

There are two types of antimony deposits of industrial significance. The first type includes bedded bodies, lenses, pockets, and stockworks in consistent sheetlike formations deriving from metasomatic replacement of limestones by silica and antimony compounds under a shale cap rock (Chikuan Shan in China; Kadamdzhai, Tereksai, and Dzhizhikrut in Soviet Middle Asia). The second type of deposit comprises systems of steeply dipping quartz-antimonite crossveins in shales (Turgai, Razdol’noe, and Sarylakh in the USSR; Gravelotte in South Africa). Quartz-antimonite ores are practically monometallic, while the polysulfide complex ores sometimes contain admixtures of fluorite and of minerals of Hg, Au, Ag, Cu, Pb, Zn, W, Sn, and As.

As of 1974, estimated reserves of antimony ores in capitalist and developing countries were 1.6–1.8 million tons. Antimony ores are extracted mainly through underground mining. While lumps of rich ore in vein deposits do not require dressing, leaner ores are dressed using gravity and flotation methods yielding concentrates that are 30–55 percent Sb. Production of antimony concentrate is reflected in the following figures, which represent thousands of tons of Sb: 14–18 in South Africa, 11–14 in Bolivia, 3–5 in Mexico, 2–3 in Turkey, and 1–2 in Morocco. The annual production of antimony in capitalist and developing countries was 40,000–50,000 tons in 1974, of which 90 percent came from monometallic ores (one-third from blanket deposits, two-thirds from crossveins), 6 percent from complex ores, and 4 percent from antimony-containing ores.


Fedorchuk, V. P. “Geneticheskie i promyshlennye tipy mestorozhdenii sur’my.” Razvedka i okhrana nedr, 1974, no. 8.


References in periodicals archive ?
Tri-Star Resources seeks to explore for and produce antimony ore at the Goynuk antimony mine in the Gediz district of Turkey.
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Commodity 1989 1990 Iron ore 2,410,000 2,300,000 Lead-zinc ore 274,748 276,077 Antimony ore 11,096 11,169 Tungsten (scheelite) 396,393 351,311 Gypsum 693,711 633,054 Anhydrite 111,943 118,591 Graphite 15,307 22,705 Talc 133,078 133,971 Kaolin 492,417 473,386 Dolomite 1,654,158 1,879,837 Magnesite 1,204,942 1,179,162 Clay 6,855 31,039 Quartz sand 818,633 818,408 Quartzite 263,084 248,644 Feldspar 7,251 8,788 Salt brine ([m.