World famous geologists call this mine the best held secret of our planet. Some valued it as the biggest secret of mankind, because allegedly its’ bowels allegedly hid the secret of the origin of the universe and the solar system! This mine is known worldwide because it is the only habitat of thallium in the world and a potential “goldmine” of environmentally clean energy.

Recent results have confirmed that in certain situations lorandite releases enormous amounts of energy, which may in future be an appropriate substitute for nuclear.
In the 80s of last century conducted a special project called “lorandite loreks” who financed several European countries. However, beginning with the Balkan wars of the project was terminated.

There is only one place in the world where the mineral lorandite can be found in its purest form and in such vast quantities.  That place is Allchar (Alshar) and is located in the Kozuf mountain Kozuf in Southern  Europe, more precisely in Macedonia. Lorandite is important for science as it holds the neutrino particle, known to be able to generate “sun energy”. If scientifically investigated, it can help us understand processes that occur inside the sun.

Lorándite is a thallium arsenic sulfosalt with the chemical formula: TlAsS2. Though rare, it is the most common thallium-bearing mineral. Lorandite occurs in low-temperature hydrothermal associations and in gold and mercury ore deposits. Associated minerals include stibnite, realgar, orpiment, cinnabar, vrbaite, greigite, marcasite, pyrite, tetrahedrite, antimonian sphalerite, arsenic and barite.

The mineral is being used for detection of solar neutrino via a certain nuclear reaction involving thallium. It has a monoclinic crystal structure consisting of spiral chains of AsS3 tetrahedra interconnected by thallium atoms, and can be synthesized in the laboratory.


Lorándite was first discovered at the Allchar deposit, near Kavadarci, Macedonia in 1894 and named after Loránd Eötvös, a prominent Hungarian physicist.


Apart from the Allchar deposit in Macedonia, lorandite is also found at the Dzhizhikrut Sb–Hg deposit in Tajikistan and at the Beshtau uranium deposit, near Pyatigorsk, northern Caucasus Mountains, Russia. As an ore mineral, it is encountered at the Lanmuchang Hg–Tl deposit, Guizhou Province, China; at the Zarshuran gold deposit in northeastern Iran; and at the Lengenbach Quarry in Switzerland. In the US, it is present at the New Rambler Cu–Ni mine in Wyoming; at the Jerritt Canyon mines, Independence Mountains district and Carlin Gold mine in Nevada; and at the Mercur gold deposit in Utah.

Laboratory synthesis

Single crystals of lorandite can be grown from a mixture of thallium nitrate (TlNO3), elemental arsenic and sulfur in concentrated aqueous solution of ammonia. The mixture is placed in an autoclave and is kept at elevated temperature (~250 °C) for several days. This procedure yields deep-red prismatic crystals elongated along the [001] crystal axis, which are similar to the mineral in appearance and crystallographic structure details.

Geological occurrence

The tectonic setting of Allchar deposit, Macedonia where lorandite was originally discovered, is an anticline structure originating from sediments of the upper Cretaceous Period. During the mineralization processes, the presence of andesite rocks caused movements of hydrothermal solutions along the dolomite and andesite contacts enabling the formation of lorandite deposits.

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