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MINERAL RESOURCES DISTRIBUTION IN INDONESIA

Distribution of mineral resources in Indonesia strongly related to its geological


conditions. In identifying a mineral existence, there are three main factors to be consider:
firstly the host rock (as the source); secondly to their environment (the place that mineral
deposit formed); and finally the processes that affect the formation of mineral deposits. In
describing the distribution of mineral resources in Indonesia, I classify the deposit based on
the geological process then associate them with the host rock and also the location of the
mineral deposit.

Primary Tin

Au-Ag Ephithermal

Iron placer
Lateritic
Bauxite

Tin placer

Au-Ag Porphiry
Lateritic
Nickel

Based on the process of deposit formation, mineral resources in Indonesia can be classified
into two groups:
1. Primary Mineral Deposit
Primary mineral deposit is mineral deposits from the activity of magma (segregation and
differentiation processes). There are some important primary mineral deposit in
Indonesia, as follow:
a. Tin primary deposit, formed as part of the process of magmatism (hydrothermalpneumatolytic processes) that form granite igneous felsic-rock. In the final phase of
the rock formation, cassiterite was mainly produced. Cassiterite then trapped in the
upper part of rock body, this condition makes the tin from the ore body easy to be
weathered. This primary tin deposit can be found in the Rayah Cape, Bangka, Muntai,
and Belitung.
b. Gold-silver mineral deposit that associated with Cu (known as porphyry deposit).
Porphyry is formed by hydrothermal activity associated with shallow igneous
intrusions. This kind of deposit found in Grasberg, Erstberg, Papua, Irian Jaya
magmatic arc; and Batuhijau in Sumbawa, located in the eastern part of Sunda-Banda
arc.

c. Gold-silver mineral deposit that is not associated with Cu (known as epithermal


deposit). The deposit formation process is highly affected by the fault from the
activity of subduction zones along Sumatera-Java. This deposit found at G. Pongkor
in Bogor, associated with Sunda-Banda andesitic brecciation zones with Au-Ag vein
structure. Another epithermal gold carrier deposit also found at Gosowong in
Halmahera and Kelian gold deposit in East Kalimantan.
d. The primary non-metallic mineral deposit, this classification is to explain another
primary deposit which have high concentration of non-metallic mineral that have
economic value in Indonesia. For example andesite, granite, diorite stone, diamond
mining materials primer.
2. Secondary Mineral Deposit
Secondary deposit is formed through the processes of weathering (chemical or
mechanical), transport, sorting (sorting), and the concentration of (enrichment), resulting
in certain ore deposits. There are some important secondary mineral deposit in Indonesia,
as follow:
a. Tin placer deposit, known as tin alluvial sediment. These deposits are formed due to
the weathering of primary tin rich host rock (cassiterite-rich). The main factors that
control the formation of this deposit are the intensive weathering process by tropical
climate of Indonesia and the shallow sea environment on the Sunda-shelf plateau in
western Indonesia. These deposits are found in Sambong Giri, A. Beaver, Singkep,
Bangka and Belitung. Compared to the tin primary deposit, this secondary deposit is
more economical to be mined (easily to take and have a big amount of resources).
b. Lateritic nickel deposit, mainly found in the eastern part of Indonesia. It associate
with ultra-mafic forming rocks. The deposits are found at Soroako (Sulawesi),
Maluku Island, Halmahera, Gebe, Gag, Waigeo, and Papua. Lateritic nickel deposit is
an advance product of ultramafic Ni-silicate rich rocks weathering process. Beside the
Ni elements, the presence of olivine and pyroxene (easy weathered minerals) in the
host rock will maximize the laterification process. The host rock forming environment
is related to the tectonic activity (triple junction).
c. Lateritic bauxite deposits were mainly found in Riau Islands, Bangka and Belitung
and West Kalimantan, it also found in Central Kalimantan, Southeast Sulawesi and
Halmahera island of Sumba. Bauxite deposit in Indonesia generally formed from
secondary processes such as weathering (laterification) igneous rocks of acidicintermediate Pre-Tertiary age which contain Al-rich mineral (feldspar) as
granodiorite, diorite, gabbro, andesite and granite. In general, bauxite consists of three
main mineral resources are gibsit aluminum hydrate, boehmite, and diaspora.
d. Iron placer deposit, found as alluvial coast. This deposit lie along the west coast of
Sumatra, Java and Bali's southern coast, the beaches of Sulawesi, East Nusa
Tenggara, Maluku, and the northern coast of Papua. The host rocks mostly came from
andesitic or basaltic volcanic rocks. These deposits contain major minerals such as
magnetite, hematite, and ilmenite.
e. Gold placer deposit found in Barito river, Kapuas river, Kahayan river (Kalimantan).
f. The secundary non-metallic mineral deposit, including kaolin, feldspar, gravel-sand
sediment (found around the river), limestone deposit.