Finland discovers rare earth minerals at the Sokli deposit 

Image: Finnish Minerals Group.

Finnish Minerals Group and the Geological Survey of Finland have identified two new minerals, kukharenkoite and cordylite, at the company’s Sokli deposit. This is the first time these rare earth minerals have been discovered in the country.

“Now we have a better picture of the occurrence of REE-bearing minerals in the different ore types found in Sokli,” project geologist Teo Lehto said in a statement. “The findings will be used in future geological surveys and modeling in Sokli and the testing of ore processing, which serves as basis for mineral resource estimation and mine planning and design.”

“The analysis work has scientific value as well, and we have worked in close cooperation with both Finnish and international research partners,” he added.

The new minerals were identified by analyzing drill core sections collected from Sokli. 

Finland is emerging as a key mining and processing hub for battery metals. Sokli is the world’s largest carbonatite deposit and could produce at least 10% of the REE needed annually in Europe to make permanent magnets.

“It’s great to achieve the expected results from our comprehensive, long-term study. These findings are another step towards achieving our goal of exploiting this unique mineral deposit in safeguarding the raw materials self-sufficiency of Europe,” project director Pasi Heino said.

“The Western world’s business opportunities associated with REE are growing, and the production of magnets is among the key ways of advancing the use of renewable energy and the electrification of transport.”

Mineralogical characterization and testing of ore processing will also continue this winter and during 2024.