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Mineral Sand

Sri Lanka Mineral Sands

The processing plant is located at Pulmoddai in the eastern coast of Sri Lanka 54 km north of Trincomalee. The beach sand at Pulmoddai is very rich in valuable minerals namely Ilmenite, Rutile, Zircon, Monazite and Garnet with a percentage as high as 60% heavy minerals of which 65% is Ilmenite, 10% Rutile & 10% Zircon. It has been estimated that a total quantity of 12.5 million tons of unexploited valuable minerals sands are available in and around Pulmoddai. The mineral sand deposit is spread along five miles from Arisimale to Kokkilai and about 400 yards towards the land side.

Apart from that another mineral sand deposit spread along distance of 45 miles is situated from Nilavelli to Mulativu. It is considered as the richest sand deposit in the world.


High specific gravity, very hard, black in color, Magnetic, electricity conducting


High specific gravity, very hard, black in red, Non-Magnetic, electricity conducting


High specific gravity, very hard glassy white in color, Non-Magnetic, electricity non-conducting

Hi.Ti. Ilmenite

High specific gravity, very hard, brownish black in color, weakly magnetic electricity conducting


Radioactive, very hard, yellow in color, very weakly magnetic, electricity non-conducting

Garnet Sand

Moderately hard, moderate specific gravity, blood red in color, very weakly magnetic, electricity non-

Quartz Sand

Low in specific gravity, less hard, brown to white in color, non-magnetic, electricity non-conducting


Ilmenite and Rutile are used mainly to produce titanium dioxide. Titanium dioxide is present in ilmenite and rutile in percentages of 52% and 95% respectively. It is white in color. Its opaqueness is deeper. Therefore, titanium dioxide is used extensively in plastic, paper and ink industries. Of the total world production of titanium dioxide approximately 50% is used for ink industry, 25% in paper industry and 13% in plastic industry.

Manufacturing of metal titanium is another advantage of ilmenite & Rutile. Metal titanium is as strong as steel. This metal withstands very high temperature. Therefore, this metal is used in space crafts. Metal titanium is highly resistance to corrosion. Rutile is used in its raw form for manufacturing of welding rods. Zircon helps to make glossy and excellent finish for porcelain goods, sanitary ware, wall and floor tiles. Zircon is used in foundries and furnaces as this mineral withstands high temperature.

Ilmenite is used to manufacture Titanium Dioxide white pigment which has its own peculiar characteristics such as pure whiteness and brightness than any other pigment can achieve, non-toxic in contrast to lead pigment, non-corrosive, stand high temperature, does not change its color when continuously exposed to sunlight and has high hiding power. Therefore, the ultimate use of this mineral is in paper, paint, plastic, rubber, textile industries and to make printing ink.