Beach placer. Richards Bay, Republic of South Africa

Aeolian dunes of Recent age lie parallel to the beach and contain a large heavy mineral placer deposit. Ilmenite and rutile are accompanied by garnet, pyroxene, hornblende, feldspar, tourmaline, epidote, kyanite and staurolite. The source of the ilmenite is believed to be Drakensberg volcanics and post-Karoo dolerites, whereas the rutile and zircon have been eroded from granites and gneisses. The deposit is mined for ilmenite and rutile and the samples are from a rutile concentrate. The following mineralogy and their relative proportions reflect this.

Major Minerals:


Minor Minerals:

Ilmenite, leucoxene, zircon

Trace Minerals:

Include haematite, anatase, monazite, magnetite, chromite, pyrite, sphene, goethite


Rutile shows twinning on (101)


Logan 1976; Fockema, 1986