MINERALOGY AND GEOCHEMICAL COMPOSITION OF TERMITE MOUND SOILS FROM IDOMA AREA OF BENUE STATE, NIGERIA

O. A. Idoko, F.E Okieimen

Abstract


The aim of this research was to examine the variations in the mineralogical and geochemical compositions of the termitaria from the Idoma speaking areas of Benue State, Nigeria. The samples were collected from four termitaria and their surrounding soils in four LGAs, air dried, ground and used for the analysis using X-ray diffraction (XRD) and X-ray fluorescence (XRF) analytical methods. The XRD patterns revealed the dominant minerals in the termitaria samples to be hematite, phlogopite and chrysotile with traces of quartz in Ogbadibo surrounding soils, biote in Otukpo termite soil, antigorite in Ogbadibo termite soil, lizartite in Otukpo termite soil and nacrite in Otukpo surrounding soil samples. The termitaria samples were composed mainly of SiO2 (49.64%), Fe2O3(22.88%) and Al2O3 (19.42%). Oxides of elements such as P2O5, CaO, MgO, K2O, SO2 and Na2O are present less than 1%. The geochemical indices K2O/Al2O3(5.99); Na2O/K2O (0.54) and SiO2/Al2O3(2.56) provided information on the mineralogy in the samples such as feldspar range, mineralogical maturity and the source rock lithology of the termitaria samples. The high values of Chemical Index of Alteration (CIA) (88.34), Chemical Index of Weathering (CIW) (93.00), Plagioclase index of alteration (PIA) (92.50) and Mineralogical Index of Alteration (MIA) (76.67) indicate that the source rocks underwent high degree of chemical weathering.


Keywords: Mineralogy, geochemistry, termite mound soils


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Chemical Society of Nigeria