Lithological distribution of rare earth elements in automorphic and alluvial soils in the Bregalnica river basin

Biljana Balabanova, Trajce Stafilov, Robert Šajn


The present study gives an overview of the rare earth elements (REEs) distribution in automorphic and alluvial soil (top and sub soil sample) in the Bregalnica river environ. The elements contents were determined using inductively coupled plasma with mass spectrometry. The total sum of the light rare earth elements (ΣLREEs) in the whole investigated area ranges from 8.6-225 mg kg-1, while the total sum of the heavy rare earth elements (ΣHREEs) ranges from 0.92-33.7 mg kg-1. The distribution of the LREEs (La-Ce-Pr-Nd-Sm-Gd) is predominantly related to the Quaternary terraces and the Paleogene flysch. The anthropogenic activities that occur in the Pb-Zn surroundings and the Cu mineralization in the investigated area significantly influence the lithological distribution of this geochemical association of elements. On the other hand, the long-term deposition of the HREEs (Eu-Tb-Dy-Ho-Er-Tm-Yb-Lu) presents a typical geochemical marker of the area of the Bregalnica river basin.


Soil, rare earth elements, spatial distribution, ICP-MS, Bregalnica river basin

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