The Geochemistry of Rare Earth Elements (REE), Yttrium (Y) and Scandium (Sc) in Some Upper Cretaceous Jordanian Phosphorites

Rushdi M. Sadaqah, Abdulkader M. Abed, Kurt A. Grimm, Peir K. Pufahl


The importance of Rare Earth Elements (REE) in phosphorites had attracted attention in the last few years, since these enriched elements could be subtracted as by product in the fertilizer industry. In addition, their role in depositional environment is well established.
Therefore, thirty seven phosphorite samples from all over Jordan; twelve from SE, fourteen from central and eleven from NW were analyzed for REE and other elements.
The results show that REE are depleted relative to worldwide phosphorites (35.64- 85.23ppm) and have seawater pattern indicating the incorporation from seawater. The depletion increases southwards due to (i) less time for incorporation of the REE at the sea floor, (ii) source rock of REE which is sandstone, (iii) very shallow burial, (iv) slight weathering of phosphorites. Ce shows a negative anomaly increasing northwards indicating more oxic environment.
Y and Sc also are analyzed and treated in this manuscript since Y has similar behavior to REE and Sc lies in the same column at the periodic table.
Other major, minor and trace elements are also studied and will be treated in another article.


Jordan, Upper Cretaceous, Phosphorites, REE, Yttrium, Scandium.

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