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Implications of Non-Carbonate Dolomite Minerals in the Formation of Red Soils in a Paleokarstic Context in the Taoudeni Basin in Burkina Faso

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Document pages: 13 pages

Abstract: Uncertainties remain as to the ability of certain carbonate rocks to form the red soils covering them. These doubts, which have been the subject of debate for several decades, become real when carbonate rocks are pure and low in insoluble residues. In the carbonate rocks of the Taoudeni basin in Burkina Faso, brown-red to red soils develop, at the top of hillsides and in karstic cavities. No study in the region has yet shown the existence in these carbonate rocks of sufficient insolubles to form soils after decalcification. The objective of this study was therefore to identify and quantify the minerals of carbonate rocks in order to identify the origin of red soils. Petrographic, chemical (XRF) and mineralogical (XRD) investigations on dominant carbonate rocks features in the study area show that the rocks studied are mainly magnesian dolomites (Dolomite > 50 of carbonate minerals and Ca Mg ratio 12 ) in other dolomitic features. These insoluble silicates formed of quartz, potassium feldspar (orthoclase), clays (talc, phlogopite and kaolinite) and iron oxides constitute the main original material of reddened soils in karstic cavities.

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