In the copper mine in Montecatini Val di Cecina (Tuscany), researchers from the Institute of Geosciences and Earth Resources have discovered the presence of selenium, tellurium and precious metals, with concentrations well above the earth's average. The deposit, long since depleted, was formed 150 million years ago at the bottom of an ocean, and then tectonically displaced in the middle of the Apennine chain.  Research offers new perspectives in the detection of these metals, both on the ocean floor and in mountain ranges. 

These deposits allow for the analysis and understanding of hydrothermal processes occurring in the least accessible part of oceanic systems, which can only be reached by expensive drilling.

For more information read the CNR press notes.

Bibliographic reference

Dini, A.; Rielli, A.; Di Giuseppe, P.; Ruggieri, G.; Boschi, C. The Ophiolite-Hosted Cu-Zn VMS Deposits of Tuscany (Italy). Minerals 202414, 273. 

For information: Andrea Dini, CNR-IGG (