Ituri Uele District - Ami, Kuma, Go, Yedi, Gobu, Lambiti, Kodo, Maie, Gaima, Tinda

Dem. Rep. Congo

Main commodities: Fe
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The Ituri-Uele iron deposits are located in the northeast of the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC), in the headwaters of the Uele and Kibali (upper Ituri) rivers. It comprises a series of occurrences and deposits distributed over an area of some 250 x 250 km within a polygon defined by the towns of Andudu, Bunia, Aru and Watsa, located to the south of the border with Sudan and west of Uganda. Individual deposits and occurrences include Ami, Kuma, Go, Yedi, Gobu, Lambiti, Kodo, Maie, Gaima and Tinda. These deposits are in the same greenstone belts that host the Kilo and Moto Archaean gold deposits.

The basement rocks in the northeast DRC consist of Archaean gneisses and granite-greenstone rocks, including i). the extensive, highly metamorphosed (to granulite facies) units of the Mesoarchaean (~3.5 Ga) West Nile System which extends into Uganda and the Sudan to the north and east respectively; ii). scattered greenstone belts, including the Ganguan to the west and the Kibali greenstone belt to the east, both of which represent greenstone emplacement between 3.2 and 2.6 Ga maily in northeastern DRC; and iii). two main generations of granite emplacement at 2.9 to 2.7 Ga and about 2.5 Ga represented by the 800x300 km, WNW-ESE elongated Upper Congo Granitoid Massif within northeastern DRC, which cuts both the West Nile system basement and the greenstone belts.

The known iron mineralisation is associated with banded iron formations (itabirites) of the Kibali greenstones. The Kibali greenstones are separated into several isolated belts by the Upper Congo Granitoid Massif and may represent an originally continuous greenstone terrane. It comprises and eastern and western facies. The eastern facies has a predominance of mafic to intermediate volcanic rocks with lesser banded iron formation (BIF), while the western contains mostly BIFs and lesser mafic rocks. The Kibali can also be divided into an upper and lower succession. To the east, the lower Kibali comprises mafic to intermediate volcanics with some BIFs with an upper age limit of 2.89 Ga. It is overlain by mainly volcanic agglomerates and meta-andesite with some quartzites and BIFs., locally intruded by 2.5 Ga granitoids.

The BIFs occur as long, relatively narrow ridges that may be followed for tens of kilometres forming a succession of lenses. These ridges protrude for 10 to 700 m above the surrounding countryside, usually with with one steep and the other shallow slope, exposed as cuestas. Thick laterite crusts crown the tops of these ridges, extending to their bases. The BIFs are banded ferruginous (magnetite-)quartzite and jaspilites, some of which have been enriched to form high grade ores. The resultant mineralisation comprises lenses of massive and almost pure hematite. The BIFs are generally concordant with the regional trend of the foliation of the surrounding metamorphic rocks, and have been influenced or modified by the emplacement of the granites.

Woodtli (1961) quoted individual deposits such as Mt. Tina as being a 4 km long and 500 m high ridge with a 200 m wide mineralised, upgraded band accounting for around 1 Gt of >68% Fe ore, while Mt. Ami is a 5 km long ridge which protrudes 700 m above the countryside, with a 100 m wide mineralised and enriched BIF accounting for 770 Mt of > 45% Fe ore.

Resource estimates are not well established, although Marelle and Abdulla (1970) quote 4.95 Gt @ 45 to 65% Fe within the region in a series of deposits. Woodtli (1961) estimated a resource of 900 Mt @ >45% Fe in the Upper Ituri Basin and 1350 Mt @ >68% Fe in the Upper Uele basin.

The most recent source geological information used to prepare this summary was dated: 1970.    
This description is a summary from published sources, the chief of which are listed below.
© Copyright Porter GeoConsultancy Pty Ltd.   Unauthorised copying, reproduction, storage or dissemination prohibited.

  References & Additional Information

Porter GeoConsultancy Pty Ltd (PorterGeo) provides access to this database at no charge.   It is largely based on scientific papers and reports in the public domain, and was current when the sources consulted were published.   While PorterGeo endeavour to ensure the information was accurate at the time of compilation and subsequent updating, PorterGeo takes no responsibility what-so-ever for inaccurate or out of date data, information or interpretations.

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