Geology of Greenland Survey Bulletin 190 - 2001

The Ilímaussaq alkaline complex, South Greenland: status of mineralogical research with new results

Edited by Henning Sørensen

The alkaline complex of Illímaussaq in the Mesoproterozoic Gardar Proince of South Greenland is the type locality for peralkaline, silica-undersaturated agpaitic nepheline syenites and represents an enormous concentration of a number of rare elements, particularly Li, Be, Nb, Zr, REE, Y, U and Th. This explains the presence of about 220 minerals, 27 first described from there, and nine unique to the complex.

Modern investigations of the complex started in the late 1950s, and since 1965 scientific papers on the complex published in various scientific journals have been consecutively numbered under the title 'Contributions to the mineralogy of Illímaussaq'. By 1981 this had reached no. 63 with a progress report on the geology, mineralogy, geochemistry and economic geology of the complex following ten years of intensive field activity.

This bulletin, no 100 in 'Contributions to the mineralogy of Illímaussaq', presents results from the continuing laboratory investigations of material collected during the earlier field work and drilling programmes, together with discussions and reviews of some selected topics in the light of new developments in the study of agpaitic nepheline syenites and their minerals.

Edited by Henning Sørensen