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Niobec mine, Saint-Honoré carbonatite complex, Saint-Honoré, Le Fjord-du-Saguenay RCM, Saguenay-Lac-Saint-Jean, Québec, Canada

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Latitude & Longitude (WGS84): 48° 32' 7'' North , 71° 8' 57'' West
Latitude & Longitude (decimal): 48.53528,-71.14917
Köppen climate type:Dfc : Subarctic climate

Formerly: Niobec mine, Saguenay (Chicoutimi), Le Fjord-du-Saguenay Co., Québec, Canada

The mine has been in operation since the late 1970s. Located 15 kilometres northwest of Saguenay city (merged in 2002 with Chicoutimi city, it is notable for large, thick prismatic barite crystals.

The Niobec orebody, which measures 600 metres by 800 metres, is situated in the southern part of the Saint-Honore carbonatite complex, which is mainly comprised of dolomitic carbonates in the centre and calcitic carbonates on the edges. This carbonatite is an oval-shaped pluton covering 12 square kilometres, that intrudes Ordovician-age Trenton limestone. The deposit is open at depth. The Niobec property now covers a total area of approximately 1,735 hectares, comprising two mining leases and also includes 43 claims totaling 1,605.6 hectares.

The two niobium-bearing minerals are pyrochlore and columbite, containing up to 70% niobium pentoxide (Nb205) ( They occur as microscopic crystals and grains dispersed in the carbonatite and are rarely visible to the naked eye. Barite with associated calcite and fluorite is found in vugs and pockets in Trenton limestone at contacts with the carbonatite.

Mineral List

32 valid minerals.

Regional Geology

This geological map and associated information on rock units at or nearby to the coordinates given for this locality is based on relatively small scale geological maps provided by various national Geological Surveys. This does not necessarily represent the complete geology at this locality but it gives a background for the region in which it is found.

Click on geological units on the map for more information. Click here to view full-screen map on

Data and map coding provided by, used under Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 License

This page contains all mineral locality references listed on This does not claim to be a complete list. If you know of more minerals from this site, please register so you can add to our database. This locality information is for reference purposes only. You should never attempt to visit any sites listed in without first ensuring that you have the permission of the land and/or mineral rights holders for access and that you are aware of all safety precautions necessary.


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DENOMMÉ, E., THIVIERGE, S., ROY, D.W., CHOWN, E. AND GAUTHIER, A.(1982) The St-Honoré carbonatite and associated niobium deposits, ClM 84th annual meeting, April 1982, paper 55, 9 pages.
FORTIN-BÉLANGER, M. (1977) Le complexe annulaire à carbonatite de St-Honoré P.Q./Canada) et sa minéralisation à niobium: étude pétrographique et géochimique, Doctoral thesis, Université Claude Bernard, Lyon, France, 308p.
FOURNIER, A. (1993) Magmat!c and hydrothermal controls of LREE mineralization of the St-Honoré carbonatite, Québec. M.Sc. thesis, McGill University, Montreal, Canada. 95p.
GAUTHIER, A. (1979) Étude minéralogique, pétrographique et géochimique de la zone à terres-rares de la carbonatite de St.-Honoré, M.Sc. thesis, Université du Québec à Chicoutimi, Québec, Canada, 181 p.
KENNEDY, I. & GAGNON, G. (1981): Barite from the Niobec Mine Chicoutimi, Quebec. Mineralogical Record 12:355-357.
THIVIERGE, S, ROY O.-W., CHOWN E.H. AND GAUTHIER A. (1983) Évolution du complexe alcalin de St.-Honoré (Québec) après sa mise en place. Mineralium Deposita, 18, 267-283.
VALLÉE, M. AND DUBUC, F. (1970) The St-Honoré Carbonatite Complex, Québec. ClM Transactions, 73, 346-356.
Berger, V.I., Singer, D.A., and Orris, G.J. (2009): Carbonatites of the World. Explored Deposits of Nb and REE - Database and Grade and Tonnage Models. USGS Open-File Report 09-1139.

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