Return to Alkaline Rocks
The low radar-topped hill behind the railway station (see at right) is the alkali-ultramafic complex of Afrikanda, dicovered by Nikolai Kassin in 1917, and subsequently investigated in detail by Kupletsky in the 1930s, Afanas'ev and Kukharenko's team in the 1950s. This is a relatively small intrusive body of ultramafic rocks (olivinites, wherlites and clinopyroxenites) cross-cut by ijolites, melteigites and (silico)carbonatites. Afrikanda is the type locality for several minerals including, most recently, the rare-earth titanium oxide anzaite-(Ce), named after Anatoly Zaitsev. Anatoly and I have revisited the mineralogy and petrology of Afrikanda and published several detailed reports on both carbonatites and their associated silicate rocks (Chakhmouradian 2004; Chakhmouradian & Zaitsev 1999, 2002, 2004; Chakhmouradian, Cooper et al. 2008, 2015; Zaitsev & Chakhmouradian 2002; Chakhmouradian & McCammon 2005). Shown bellow is a panorama of the magnetite-perovskite ore pit, where many gorgeous specimens of perovskite, schorlomite and other minerals have comefrom.