Field Trip Program

1- Technical Program Highlights


a) Balikesir Borate Deposits


Turkey is the largest producer of boron ore in the world.  Important boron minerals of Turkey are tincal, colemanite and ulexite. Boron minerals contain different amount of B2O3 in their structures. The important factor for industrial application of boron minerals are B2O3 content, so they can replace each other in use . This means that one boron mineral can be trade competitor the other one. Boron minerals can be used in some sectors in the industry as crude minerals. In general, their applications after refining and as end-products are wider than crude ones. Borates find use in different sectors, however the principal markets are: agriculture, detergents and soaps, flame retardants, glass, glazes, frits , enamels and insulation.


Turkey, USA and Russia have the important boron mines. In terms of total reserves, Turkey has a share of 64%, and the USA has 9%. Total proven world boron reserves on the basis of B2O3 content are 363 million tons; 522 million tons are probable and possible, for a grand total as a total of 885 million tons. Turkey has total boron reserves of  563 million tons on the basis of B2O3 content .




Borate mineral deposits of Turkey are found in Neogene lacustrine sediments and are estimated to be over two billion tons; main deposits are in Eskisehir, Kütahya and Balikesir provinces. Presently all operations are owned by Etibank under Law No.2172 enacted in 1978. All existing mining titles are owned by Etibank, under law. However newly discovered deposits of boron minerals can be operated by new title holders. Turkey is an exporter of boron minerals and boron chemicals. Turkey’s borate mineral resources, the largest known deposits in the world, are under state monopoly and are developed compatible with market demand and are operated profitably. However, state-operated hardcoal operation’s losses generally wipe out all of the profit made by other state-owned primary mining operations and, as such, is a continuous drain on the Turkish economy.


b-Afyon Marble deposits


Turkey has a large quantity of marble reserves which include a wide range of colors. Among more than 100 varieties of Turkish marble are shades ranging from very light gray to black and brilliant white.


Some world-famous marble varieties are Afyon White, Afyon Tigerskin, Bilecik Pink, Marmara White, Burdur Brown, Denizli Travertine, Elazig Cherry, Karacabey Black, Golpazari Beige, Milas Kavaklidere, Aeagan Bordeaux, Aksehir Black, Thracian Granite and Ayvalik Granite. In addition, Turkish marble has a quality which can compete easily with all other world-wide marbles.


Turkey has a 40% share of world marble reserves. The total reserves, including proven, probable and possible reserves, are about 5 billion m 3. Important marble reserves are found in Afyon, Bilecik, Burdur, Denizli, Mugla, Elazig, Balikesir and Eskisehir. In Turkey, annual block-marble production is around 1200 thousand tons, and the production of tiles and slabs is around 13 million square meters.


Recently, granite has been widely used in Turkey. It is extensively used for the inner and outer decorations of buildings because of its appearance, durability against external conditions and high resistance to wear. Turkey has large granite reserves in many cities, such as Ordu, Rize, Trabzon, Balikesir, Kirklareli, Kirsehir Bolu, Izmit, Canakkale and Izmir.


Modern production equipment and methods have been very important factors in the development of the natural-stone industry in Turkey. The increase in production, the vitality of the construction sector in the domestic market, and the presence of new technologies have contributed to widespread use of natural stones as a construction material.


The natural stone sector in Turkey has developed rapidly in the last ten years. Total natural stone exports were 186 million dollars in 2000. Processed marble ranks first, with 136 million dollars in exports. Block marble takes second place with 29 million dollars.


In 2000, major markets for Turkish processed natural-stones exports were the USA, Israel, Saudi Arabia, Spain, Italy, Germany, the Russian Federation and Taiwan .


c-Magnesite Deposits


Turkey has one of the largest magnesite deposits in the world. According to 2001 data in Turkish mining import associations, Table 1 shows magnesite reserves of Turkey in comparison with other countries in the world. Magnesite occurs in three major types in Turkey.


Table 1. Turkey’s magnesite reserves in comparison to world reserves.



Turkey reserves (tons)

World reserves (tons)

Turkey % of World

The arrenge of Turkey in the other countries

Measured reserves







Measured + possible reserves







1) Amorphous Magnesite: Research in amorphous magnesite deposits in Turkey has demonstrated that they form in ultrabasic rocks overlying carbonate rocks. Formation of these amorphous magnesite deposits started with the metamorphism of carbonate beds at depth, which produced hydrothermal fluids rich in CO2 and Mg2+ ions. Later chemical reaction of CO2 and Mg resulted in precipitation of MgCO3 in fractures. Amorphous Magnesite has been deposited as veins and stocks. They seem massive and cauliflower. Most magnesite deposits in Turkey are amorphous. In additional, round, cauliflower and massive structures are common and they have been located in three regions.


Kutahya, Eskisehir, Bursa Regions: 28% of total reserves are in this region. This is the region with the largest magnesite deposits and high production in Turkey.


Konya Region: 50% of total reserves are in this region. Even though the numbers of occurrences is less than in other areas, these deposits are more important than others.


Middle and East Anatolia region: 6% of total reserves are in this region. Both the number of occurrences and the deposits are less important than others.


2) Crystalline (Spatic) metamorphic magnesites: These are similar to amorphous magnesite deposits and have formed as a result of metamorphism of dolomites and limestone. This kind of magnesite is rare in Turkey.


3) Crystalline ( spatic) sedimentary Magnesites: These deposits formed as a result of precipitation of magnesium carbonate in closed basins fed by surface waters. Sedimentary magnesites are found only Denizli and Cankiri regions in Turkey.


Table 2. Average compounds of Turkish magnesites.



SiO 2

Fe 2O 3

Al 2O 3









Turkish Magnesites are of high quality because of their low content of undesirable compounds (SiO2< 3%, Fe2O3/ < 1% and CaO< 3%).


According to 2001 data in Turkish mining import associations, production of crude magnesite is given in Table 3.


Table 3. Turkish and world magnesite production





Turkey % of World

The rank of Turkey among the other countries














In additional to natural magnesite, sinter magnesite (magnesia), costic magnesites (Calsine), sedimentary carbonate, magnesium hydroxide and magnesium sulfate are produced from natural magnesite in Turkey as well.


In 2001, Turkey’s export of magnesite and its derivatives was 212,250 tons and w/a value of over $ 35,000,000.

2-Schedule for the Field Trip to the Natural Wonders and Ancient Places of Anatolia


Departure from Istanbul to Kayseri with an early flight. Depart to Cappadocia. Fullday tour of Cappadocia begins with citadel of Uchisar which will enable you to get a panoramic view of the region and continues with the Goreme valley which is the highlight of the day. The valley houses , the Goreme open air museum with its churches hewn out of rock and colorful frescoes which decorate them. The next stop is in Zelve and the caves of this ancient village, the underground city of Derinkuyu which was carves as refuges from persecutors during the early Christian era. Lunch will be served enroute at a typical regional restaurant dinner & overnight in Cappadocia.


Departure to Konya will be early in the morning. Enroute there will be a stop visit to magnesite field. The next stop will be in Konya which was the capital of the Selchuck Turks in 13th century. This city hosts the Mevlana museum which is also known for its theological school of whirling dervish. Lunch will be served enroute. Dinner and overnight will be at the hotel in Afyon.


After breakfast at the hotel departure to Iscehisar, which is the biggest marble deposits of Turkey. Lunch will be taken enroute at a typical restaurant .last stop will be the great baths of Hierapolis antique city . After this visit dinner & overnight will be at the hotel in Pamukkale.


After breakfast departure to Kusadasi. After a 3 hr way lunch will be served in Selcuk at a typical restaurant. In the afternoon the visit will continue with the house of Virgin Mary and Ephesus which is the best preserved and the most often visited of all sites in Turkey. Dinner and overnight will be at the hotel in Kusadasi.


Departure will be early in the morning to Balikesir. Lunch will be served enroute. After the lunch visit of borate deposits. Arrival to Istanbul will be late. Transfer to the hotel or to the airport.

Included :
Half Board accomodation in 4* hotels (First Class)
English speaking guide
Entrance fees as per the program
5 lunches
Ýstanbul – Kayseri one way flight ticket.
Per Person in DBL : 580 USD
SGL Supplement : 100 USD