The Geochemical Character of Trace Elements in Coastal Sediments: Potential Implications of Metallic Mineral Resources on the West Coast of South Sulawesi, Indonesia

Adi Tonggiroh


This study aims to analyse the distribution model of trace elements and project alternative data on metallic mineral potential in the South Sulawesi Island by including grain distribution in nearshore sediments associated with river sediments. A total of 19 coastal sediment samples and 13 stream sediment samples were analysed by Inductive Coupled Plasma-Olysoscope Emission Spectrophotometry (ICP-OES) for Cu, Pb, Zn, Ni, Co, Th, Sr, V, Cr, Ba, Nb, Rb, and Zr. Furthermore, this elemental collection was analyzed using Principal Component Analysis (PCA) and Pearson Correlation (PC) to understand the potential implications of critical minerals and a new distribution model of trace elements on geochemical characteristics related to the geogenic source. The results showed that the coastal sediments are enriched by Sr, Zn, V, Th, Rb, Ni, Nb, Cr, Cu, and Ba, but have a depletion of Co and Zr. Geochemical processes indicated by PCA Factor 1 consisting of Ba, Nb, Pb, Rb, Sr, Th, and Zr reflect metamorphic rocks, sulfate deposits in the Tonasa Formation sediments, Mallawa Formation, and natural or anthropogenic contamination. Factor 2, consisting of Co, Cr, Cu, Ni, V, and Zn, reflects dacite sulfide mineralization, intrusive rock, metamorphic, mafic-ultramafic, and magmatism forming land that then experiences recycling of older sedimentation. Many critical metallic minerals in river and coastal sediments have the potential as future economic resources, leading to the trend of coastal sediments (paleosediment).


Keywords: petrology, geochemistry, coastal sediments.

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