The Kola Peninsula, Russia


The Kola Peninsula in northwestern Russia is truely an amazing mineral locality. This large and important region has produced over three hundred different mineral species and is the type locality for over a hundred minerals. The rich bonanza is the result of several unique igneous intrusions that occured from 3 billion years ago to 360 million years ago. Some were rich in alkali metals, especially sodium, and poor in silica and aluminum. Pegmatitic rocks produced from these unique intrusions are call agpaitic pegmatites and are found scattered all around the world. The agpaitic pegmatites of the Kola Peninsula as well as those of Narsarsuk, Greenland; Langesundfjord, Norway and especially Mont Saint-Hilaire, Quebec, Canada are by far the most famous. In addition to agpaitic pegmatites, intrusions of syenites and nepheline syenites, carbonatites, amazonic rand-pegmatites, peralkaline granites and metamorphism add to the mineral assortment with another cast of unique minerals.

In addition to the unusual chemistry of high alkali metal content and low silica and aluminum content; there is also unusually high concentrations of titanium, zirconium, phosphorous, manganese, strontium, zinc, lead, uranium, barium and especially rare earth metals such as yttrium, niobium, cerium, lanthanum, cesium, ytterbium and neodymium. Many of the new minerals found here are typically sodium titanium silicates. By far the greatest number of unique minerals from the Kola Peninsula are silicates. But, unique carbonates, oxides and phosphates are also well represented. In the table below, minerals that were first discovered from the Kola Peninsula (called the mineral's type locality) are in bold. The list below is quite extensive, but still not close to a complete list of all the minerals found here. The list of minerals includes those minerals that were discovered here as well as those that have been given world wide attention from this locality.

The Kola Peninsula sits almost completely above the arctic circle, south of the Barents Sea. Murmansk is the only large city in the Russian portion of what was traditional Lapland. The Khibiny Mountains surrounded by tundra in the center of the peninsula was the result of the mineralogically rich agpaitic alkali intrusions. Glacial erosion helped uncover the pegmatitic rocks which comprise the khibiny and Lovozero massifs. As a testament to this wonderful mineral location, many of the minerals discovered here were named in honor of these localities. Can you find them below?

The mines of the Kola Peninsula have been known to produce specimens of:

  • Elements Class:

  • Sulfides Class:

  • Halides Class:

  • Oxides Class:
    • alumotantite, aeschynite, baddeleyite, belyankinite, betafite, cafetite, calciotantite, calzirtite, cesstibtantite, euxenite, fergusonite, fersmite, formanite, gerasimovskite, ilmenite, kassite, loparite-(Ce), lueshite, manganbelyankinite, natroniobite, natrotantite, nioboloparite, plumbopyrochlore, pyrochlore, samarskite, sosedkoite, strontiopyrochlore, tantite, uranpyrochlore, uranmicrolite, vigezzite and zirconolite-2M.

  • Carbonates Class:

  • Phosphates Class:

  • Silicates Class:
    • aegirine, albite, allanite, amicite, analcime, astrophyllite, barytolamprophyllite, beryllite, bornemanite, britholite, canasite, cancrinite, carbonate-vishnevite, catapleiite, caysichite, cerite, chabazite, chevkinite, chkalovite, clinophosinaite, denisovite, elbaite, epididymite, epidote, epistolite, eudialyte, eudidymite, fedorite, fenaksite, fersmanite, foshallasite, gadolinite, gonnardite, grumantite, heulandite, hingganite, hydrodelhayelite, hydroxyl vishnevite, ilmajokite, imandrite, imaussite, imoriite, kainosite, kalborsite, kalsilite, karnasurtite-(Ce), kazakovite, keiviite-(Y), keiviite-(Yb), keldyshite, khibinskite, koashvite, komarovite, kostylevite, kuliokite-(Y), kupletskite, laplandite-(Ce), lamprophyllite, labuntsovite, lavenite, leifite, lithosite, lomonosovite, lorenzenite, lovdarite, lovozerite, magnesium astrophyllite, mangan-neptunite, merlinoite, mesolite, metaberyllite, microcline, milarite, mosandrite, murmanite, Na-komarovite, natisite, natrolite, natrosilite, nenadkevichite, nepheline, neptunite, nordite-(Ce), nordite-(La), parakeldyshite, paraumbite, pectolite, penkvilksite, perlialite, perrierite, phlogopite, phosinaite, pollucite, quartz, raite, revdite, rosenbuschite, rowlandite, sazhinite-(Ce), siedozerite, shafranovskite, shcherbakovite, sobolevite, sphene, steenstrupine-(Ce), stilbite, tainiolite, tetranatrolite, terskite, thalenite, thomsonite, tisinalite, tornebohmite-(La), tugtupite, tundrite, umbite, umbozerite, vinogradovite, vlasovite, vuonnemite, vyuntspakhkite-(Y), wadeite, wohlerite, yttrialite, yugawaralite, yuksporite, zakharovite, zircon, zirsinalite and zorite.

    bold - indicates that the Kola Peninsula is the type locality for this mineral.

    Classes of Minerals

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