This paper investigates the chemical and crystal structural properties of sand dunes of El-Oued region from the northeast Sahara of Algeria. By using of Fourier-transform infrared (FT-IR) spectroscopy, X-ray fluorescence (XRF) and X-ray diffraction (XRD) we show that El-Oued sand dunes are composed mainly of 97.6% α-quartz (SiO2) and 0.56% calcite (CaCO3). Very low concentrations of some oxides as Al2O3, Fe2O3, MgO and trace elements impurities were also found. The calculated crystallinity index CI = 0.975 confirm the highly crystalline nature of quartz. From the X-ray diffraction data, structural parameters of quartz and calcite minerals were determined. Quartz grains were found to have a hexagonal crystal structure with lattice parameters of a = b = 4.907 Å and c = 5.401 Å and calcite grains have a trigonal crystal structure with a = b = 4.977 Å and c = 17.04 Å. The calculated lattice parameters were similar to those of standard references. The crystallite sizes of quartz and calcite were estimated to be nanometric.
This is a preview of subscription content, log in to check access.
Buy single article
Instant access to the full article PDF.
Price includes VAT for USA
Subscribe to journal
Immediate online access to all issues from 2019. Subscription will auto renew annually.
This is the net price. Taxes to be calculated in checkout.
Götze J; Möckel R (ed.) (2012) Quartz: Deposits, mineralogy and analytics. Springer Science & Business Media, Verlag Berlin Heidelberg
Al-Ansary M, Pöppelreiter MC, Al-Jabry A, Iyengar SR (2012) Geological and physiochemical characterization of construction sands in Qatar. Int J Sustain Built Environ 1, 64¨C84. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.ijsbe.2012.07.001
Diago M, Iniesta AC, Delclos T, Shamim T, Calvet N (2015) Characterization of desert sand for its feasible use as thermal energy storage medium. Energy Procedia 75:2113–2118
Hamoda MF, Al-Ghusain I, Al-Mutairi NZ (2004) Sand filtration of wastewater for tertiary treatment and water reuse. Desalination 164(3):203–211
Pettijohn FJ, Potter PE, Siever R (1974) Sand and sandstone. Springer science and business media, Verlag Berlin Heidelberg
El-Baz F (1992) Origin and evolution of sand seas in the great Sahara and implications to petroleum and ground-water exploration. In proceedings of the 1st. Conference on the geology of the Arab world, Cairo University, Cairo
Jallad KN, Espada-Jallad C (2008) Spectroscopic characterization of geological materials from the United Arab Emirates. Arab J Geosci 1(2):119–127
Gnanasaravanan S, Rajkumar P (2013) Characterization of minerals in natural and manufactured sand in Cauvery River belt, Tamilnadu, India. Infrared Phys Technol 58:21–31
Pye K, & Tsoar H (2008) Aeolian sand and sand dunes. Springer science & business media, Verlag Berlin Heidelberg
Dal Martello E, Bernardis S, Larsen RB, Tranell G, Di Sabatino M, & Arnberg L (2011a) Electrical fragmentation as a novel refining route for hydrothermal quartz for SoG-Si production. Miner Eng. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.powtec.2012.02.055
Haus R, Prinz S, Priess C (2012) Assessment of high purity quartz resources. Quartz: deposits, mineralogy and analytics. Springer, Berlin, Heidelberg, pp 29–51
Moore P (2005) High-purity quartz. Ind Miner 8:54-57
Hernandez-Montelongo J, Muñoz-Noval A, García-Ruíz JP, Torres-Costa V, Martin-Palma RJ, Manso-Silvan M (2015) Nanostructured porous silicon: the winding road from photonics to cell scaffolds. A review. Front Bioeng biotechnol 3:60
Lührs AK, Geurtsen W (2009) The application of silicon and silicates in dentistry: a review. Biosilica in evolution, morphogenesis, and Nanobiotechnology. Springer, Berlin, Heidelberg, pp 359–380
Mangolini L (2013) Synthesis, properties, and applications of silicon nanocrystals. J Vac Sci Technol B Nanotechnol Microelectron 31(2):020801
Müller A, Ghosh M, Sonnenschein R, Woditsch P (2006) Silicon for photovoltaic applications. Mater Sci Eng B 134(2–3):257–262
Howari FM, Baghdady A, Goodell PC (2007) Mineralogical and geomorphological characterization of sand dunes in the eastern part of United Arab Emirates using orbital remote sensing integrated with field investigations. Geomorphology 83:67–81
Trabelsi W, Benzina M, Bouaziz S (2009) Physico-chemical characterization of the Douiret sand (Southern Tunisia): valorisation for the production of silica gel. Phys Procedia 2(3):1461–1467
Elipe MG, Lopez-Querol S (2014) Aeolian sands: characterization, options of improvement and possible employment in construction–the state-of-the-art. Constr Build Mater 73:728–739
Boussaa SA, Kheloufi A, Zaourar NB (2017) Characterization of impurities present on Tihimatine (Hoggar) quartz, Algeria. J Afr Earth Sci 135:213–219
Dos Santos MFM, Fujiwara E, Schenkel EA, Enzweiler J, Suzuki CK (2015) Quartz sand resources in the Santa Maria Eterna formation, Bahia, Brazil: a geochemical and morphological study. J S Am Earth Sci 62:176–185
Benaafi M, Abdullatif O (2015) Sedimentological, mineralogical, and geochemical characterization of sand dunes in Saudi Arabia. Arab J Geosci 8(12):11073–11092
Adnani M, Azzaoui MA, Elbelrhiti H, Ahmamou M, Masmoudi L, Chiban M (2016) Yerdi sand dunes (Erfoud area, southeastern of Morocco): color, composition, sand’s provenance, and transport pathways. Arab J Geosci 9(5):366
Mechri ML, Chihi S, Mahdadi N, Beddiaf S (2017) Study of heat effect on the composition of dunes sand of Ouargla (Algeria) using XRD and FTIR. Silicon 9(6):933–941
Diago M, Iniesta AC, Soum-Glaude A, Calvet N (2018) Characterization of desert sand to be used as a high-temperature thermal energy storage medium in particle solar receiver technology. Appl Energy 216:402–413
Zouaouid K, Gheriani R (2018) Mineralogical analysis of sand roses and sand dunes samples from two regions of South Algeria. Silicon:1–9
Corwin DL, Yemoto K (2017) Salinity: Electrical Conductivity and Total Dissolved Solids. Methods Soil Anal 2(1) https://doi.org/10.2136/msa2015.0039.
Beddiaf S, Chihi S, Leghrieb Y (2015) The determination of some crystallographic parameters of quartz, in the sand dunes of Ouargla, Algeria. J Afr Earth Sci 106:129–133
Saikia BJ, Parthasarathy G (2010) Fourier transform infrared spectroscopic characterization of kaolinite from Assam and Meghalaya, northeastern India. J Mod Phys 1(04):206–210
Boussaa S, Kheloufi A, Zaourar NB, Kerkar F (2016) Valorization of Algerian sand for photovoltaic application. Acta Phys Pol A 130(1)
Boev B, Jovanovski G, Makreski P (2009) Minerals from Macedonia. XX. Geological setting, lithologies, and identification of the minerals from Rzanovo Fe-Ni deposit. Turkish. J Earth Sci 18(4):631–652
Ersoy B, Dikmen S, Yildiz A, Gören R, Elitok Ö (2013) Mineralogical and physicochemical properties of talc from Emirdağ, Afyonkarahisar, Turkey. Turkish. J Earth Sci 22(4):632–644
Saikia BJ, Parthasarathy G, Sarmah NC (2008) Fourier transform infrared spectroscopic estimation of crystallinity in SiO2 based rocks. Bull Mater Sci 31(5):775–779
Mahdadi N, Chihi S, Bouguettaia H, Beddiaf S, Mechri ML (2017) Chromatic classification of Ouargla (Algeria) dunes sand: determination of Main compositions and color causes, by using XRD, FTIR and XRF. Silicon 9(2):211–221
Maazouzi A, Kettab A, Badri A, Zahraoui B, Khelfaoui R (2014) Algerian sahara sand dunes characterization. Silicon 6(3):149–154
Anbalagan G, Prabakaran AR, Gunasekaran S (2010) Spectroscopic characterization of Indian standard sand. J Appl Spectrosc 77(1):86–94
Van der Marel HW, Beutelspacher H (1976) Atlas of infrared spectroscopy of clay minerals and their admixtures. Elsevier Publishing, Amsterdam
Hlavay J, Jonas K, Elek S, Inczedy J (1978) Characterization of the particle size and the crystallinity of certain minerals by IR spectrophotometry and other instrumental methods: II, investigations on quartz and feldspar. Clays Clay Miner 26(2):139–143
Nayak PS, Singh BK (2007) Instrumental characterization of clay by XRF, XRD and FTIR. Bull Mater Sci 30(3):235–238
Suresh G, Ramasamy V, Ponnusamy V (2011) Mineralogical and Thermoluminescence characterizations of the river sediments from Tamilnadu, India. Nat Resour Res 20(4):389–399
File, P D (1997) JCPDS International Center for Diffraction Data: Swarthmore
Scherrer P (1918) Nachrichten von der Gesellschaft der Wissenschaften zu Göttingen, Mathematisch-Physikalische Klasse. Vol. 2, 98–100
We greatly appreciate the constructive comments of the reviewers. The authors are grateful to S. Mostefaoui from the University of Pierre et Marie Curie, Paris for his beneficial discussions and suggestions to improve the manuscript and we are very thankful to M. Telus from the University of California Santa Cruz, USA for his help in improving the language of this manuscript.
Springer Nature remains neutral with regard to jurisdictional claims in published maps and institutional affiliations.
About this article
Cite this article
Meftah, N., Mahboub, M.S. Spectroscopic Characterizations of Sand Dunes Minerals of El-Oued (Northeast Algerian Sahara) by FTIR, XRF and XRD Analyses. Silicon 12, 147–153 (2020). https://doi.org/10.1007/s12633-019-00109-5
- Sand dunes
- X-rays diffraction
- Fourier-transform infrared
- Structural parameters