China's Xiang Yang Hong 01 survey vessel. (File Photo: People's Daily)
China's survey vessel “Xiangyanghong 01” has successfully completed the fifth leg of China's first global comprehensive Marine scientific investigation, which is also the fourth leg of China’s 46th oceanic navigation, according to staff at China Ocean Mineral Resources R & D Association. During the expedition, the team found large areas of rare earth sediments in the southeast Pacific, breaking a record of deep-ocean exploration on rare earth at both the national and international level.
After researching the marine geology and the overall environment in a 2.6 million square kilometers’ basin of the southeast Pacific, the expedition has collected a wealth of sediment samples, seawater samples and data for the fields of shallow seismic profiles, multibeam landform, hydrometeorology and biochemistry. Researchers used portable analyzers to test the obtain sediment samples on the spot. The results show that the percentage of rare earth is quite high in the sample, showing that the sediments have high ore-forming potential.