Projects / Programmes source: ARIS

Mineral resources

Research activity

Code Science Field Subfield
1.06.00  Natural sciences and mathematics  Geology   

Code Science Field
P430  Natural sciences and mathematics  Mineral deposits, economic geology 

Code Science Field
1.05  Natural Sciences  Earth and related Environmental sciences 
mineral resources, metal raw materials, aggregates, raw materials for construction, recycling, mining waste, environmental impacts, sustainable management, metals, coals, natural gas, black rocks, clay, building materials
Evaluation (rules)
source: COBISS
Data for the last 5 years (citations for the last 10 years) on December 7, 2023; A3 for period 2017-2021
Data for ARIS tenders ( 04.04.2019 – Programme tender , archive )
Database Linked records Citations Pure citations Average pure citations
WoS  144  2,353  1,982  13.76 
Scopus  203  3,267  2,707  13.33 
Researchers (24)
no. Code Name and surname Research area Role Period No. of publicationsNo. of publications
1.  30958  PhD Jasminka Alijagić  Geology  Researcher  2018 - 2023  61 
2.  08686  Bernarda Bole  Geology  Technical associate  2018 - 2023  41 
3.  51724  Rok Brajković    Technical associate  2018 - 2023  110 
4.  55822  Barbara Čeplak  Geology  Junior researcher  2021 - 2023  17 
5.  11447  PhD Meta Dobnikar  Geology  Researcher  2020 - 2023  171 
6.  34379  PhD Kristina Ivančič  Geology  Researcher  2020 - 2023  61 
7.  58122  Barbara Karničnik    Technical associate  2023 
8.  53562  Saša Kos  Geology  Junior researcher  2019 - 2023  40 
9.  04133  PhD Polona Kralj  Geology  Researcher  2018 - 2023  165 
10.  50620  PhD Neža Malenšek Andolšek  Geology  Technical associate  2019 - 2023  27 
11.  08255  PhD Miloš Markič  Geology  Researcher  2018 - 2023  210 
12.  29608  PhD Miloš Miler  Geology  Researcher  2018 - 2023  190 
13.  37002  Snježana Miletić  Geology  Technical associate  2018 - 2023  56 
14.  51753  Emil Pučko    Technical associate  2018 - 2023  17 
15.  10668  PhD Duška Rokavec  Geology  Researcher  2018 - 2023  363 
16.  05486  Andreja Senegačnik  Geology  Technical associate  2018 - 2023  674 
17.  05066  PhD Dragomir Skaberne  Geology  Retired researcher  2018 - 2023  240 
18.  08253  PhD Slavko Vekoslav Šolar  Geology  Researcher  2018 - 2023  350 
19.  17226  Mladen Štumergar    Technical associate  2018 - 2023  10 
20.  38183  PhD Klemen Teran  Geology  Researcher  2018 - 2023  55 
21.  11338  PhD Mirka Trajanova  Geology  Retired researcher  2018 - 2023  293 
22.  34080  Tina Zajc Benda  Geology  Technical associate  2018 - 2020  48 
23.  38099  PhD Manja Žebre  Geology  Researcher  2018  101 
24.  23427  PhD Gorazd Žibret  Geology  Head  2018 - 2023  212 
Organisations (1)
no. Code Research organisation City Registration number No. of publicationsNo. of publications
1.  0215  Geological Survey of Slovenia  Ljubljana  5051410000  10,875 
The European Union is becoming increasingly dependent on imported mineral resources. The key to ensuring the smooth functioning of the European economy is through the adequate supply of mineral resources from domestic sources, imports from countries outside EU and through recycling. The Program group Mineral Resources is engaged in the research of mineral resources throughout their life cycle: from research of the geological formations which are  the source of raw materials; through to the research of individual beds; the environmental impacts of past and present extraction and processing of raw materials; the recycling of mining and other wastes; the concepts and policies for a sustainable supply and management of raw materials at local, national and international levels. Our focus is both on raw materials for construction industry (stone aggregates, sand and gravel, natural stone, clay), metal (Pb, Zn, Hg, Sb, etc.), non-metal (quartz sand, chert etc.), raw materials and also on energy raw materials (coal, natural gas), including the use of geothermal energy. We also perform research that is indirectly relevant to the exploration of raw materials, such as the use of advanced methods of data processing and the development of new methods, research of meteorites as the primary building blocks of the Earth's crust, study of the origin of materials identified in archaeological excavations and similar.   We use a multidisciplinary approach and different research methods: fieldwork, sampling and measurement, laboratory processing of samples, materials analysis (ICP-MS, SEM/EDS, X-ray diffraction and optical microscopy), data processing, dissemination of new knowledge and transfer into practice. We present our research results also to experts outside geoscientific community: we organize consultations and workshops and invite various stakeholders. Newly acquired skills contribute to the better management of the mining public service, better spatial planning, economical management of raw materials at local and national level and help the economy. The Program group Mineral Resources leaves its mark in the international environment, because we are members of Eurogeosurveys and EIT Raw Materials, we also participate in a number of international development projects in the field of mineral resources.
Significance for science
An increasing demand for knowledge is also seen in geosciences. With a need to solve complex problems associated with sustainable supply of raw materials, an informed public has started to realize its importance. Earth science has been proven to be one of the basic sciences without which sustainable development in a modern society cannot be maintained. Increased recognition of its importance actively encourages research aimed to solve challenges for society.   Slovenia is located in a geologically diverse and structurally complex region between the Alps, Dinarides and Pannonian Basin. Here, the consequences of over 600 million years of geological evolution are seen in our natural surroundings. It has created a varied environment that has only been influenced by humans for the last few thousand years. This variety is the reason the researchers in the program group Mineral resources apply a wide range of techniques, gaining skills, and knowledge at the national level, they contribute to understanding and functioning of the Earth’s systems and the processes therein. Their work gives insight into the rock, mineral and chemical composition of a studied area, the process that lead to their formation and on the responses of surface to processes occurring at depths. Study of the geological past helps us to understand the present,  and to predict future events. Natural resources are clearly vital for human life and prosperity, greater emphasis has been placed on the evaluation of the possibilities of revitalizing ore production.   Among the more visible scientific achievements are the detailed studies of volcanic activity in the Smrekovec area and the accompanying alteration in the rocks; these are primarily a consequence of hydrothermal fluid activity. During cooling, the composition of the reaction solution changed, and different authigenic minerals crystallized. Among them zeolites, which represent a potential mineral raw material. Further alterations took place as a result of the activity of the highly mineralized solutions. Similar processes are observed in systems that are exploited for thermal water, where large amounts of minerals crystallize out of solution as the temperature and pressure drop.   Research in the Eastern Alps of Slovenia is centred mainly on the massif of Pohorje, and to a lesser extent Kozjak. Based on the study of Pohorje magmatism and metamorphic rocks, a completely new model for the formation of the Pohorje tectonic block has been derived which, identifies new possibilities for the existence of hidden ore deposits and fresh/thermal water sources. The new model differs in the perspective of the distribution and degree of deformation of the rocks, which is important for planning exploitation of architectural stone on Pohorje. This data is directly reflected in the interpretation of the development of some sedimentary basins along the western margin of the Central Paratethys. Here, and in the deeper sedimentary basins of eastern Slovenia, our richest deposits of coal, gas and oil occur, potential resources for production of non-renewable energy. Coals have been studied in detail at both the macro and micro level in the Velenje Basin, the results of the study markedly influenced the way of solving hazards posed in their excavation. Sediments and sedimentary rocks in the Tertiary basins represent a significant source of mineral aggregates and reservoirs of mineral and thermal waters.   Human impact on the environment is greater from year to year, and the consequences increasingly apparent. Therefore, environmental issues have become one of the more pronounced research topics of the Program group. Extensive research into environmental alteration caused by humans were the main cause of  the International Union of Geological Sciences adopting a new geological period named Anthropocene. By tracking the distribution and spread of pollutants in the ground and the atmosphere, caused by exploitation, extraction, deposi
Significance for the country
The approaches used to solve the complex issues that are increasingly put to geosciences are becoming increasingly interdisciplinary, and thus more understandable to a wider professional and public audience. One of the preconditions that the results of scientific research can have socio-economic and cultural importance is awareness. We have to understand and we need to know what a particular profession has to offer us, and to recognise its scientific and practical value.   Interpretations based on scientific knowledge are gaining importance. Results of the Program group are interwoven into the preparation of thematic geological maps, two- and three-dimensional geological models intended to aid human enterprise and to enable proper planning of procedures in the environment. Results provide information on mineral and other deposits, underground water sources, traditional energy resources, etc. and help identify new prospective areas for such deposits. In parallel, the research group monitors the response of the soil to pollution and accumulation of pollutants in urban and non-urban environments, which are mostly a result of human activities. We have participated in the publication of several articles, including popular articles, with which we introduced general readers to the importance and diversity of our geological heritage.   Today, other natural sciences are largely based on geological data, especially those that are directly related to the processes and activities at the Earth's surface (biology, agriculture, geography, construction, architecture, metallurgy) or at depth (mining for supply of raw materials, water resources, energy), and to a lesser extent those where the effects are indirect or awareness of the relationship is not yet recognized (technology for the production of complex materials, electrical engineering, forensics, medicine, etc.). Slovenia is not an exception in this regard.   Researchers of the Program group Mineral Resources were involved in major civil engineering projects that have been carried out in Slovenia in this project period. The largest ones are: Karavanke tunnel, the railway track Divača-Kozina, HEPP Kozjak, Brežice, landfill for low and medium level radioactive waste Vrbina. In addition, we have been involved in several smaller projects, which were equally important for customers. Within this context a new and therefore important area is represented by SEM/EDS investigations for the needs of the textile industry.   Members of the Program group are leading and managing the mining public services in Slovenia, which also represents application of knowledge in practice. We provide expert opinions for spatial planning purposes and are licensed jurisdiction opinion providers for courts in the field of mineral resources. Overall activities of the Program group have therefore significantly contributed to the better and more efficient management of mineral resources at the local, regional and national level.   Last, but not least, a database of mineral deposits, built by the members of Program group Mineral Resources, and is needed and used on national basis as the part of public mining service, was developed on the basis of long-term research results of the Program group. Unfortunately, we have noted that due to the time lag from production of the data, gained through hard work, to their use, this fact is often overlooked.   Results of the Program group were used in defining geo-hazardous areas as well as for the establishment of Geopark Vulkanija at Goričko and UNESCO Global Geoparks Idrija and Karavanke/Karawanken. The program group thus helps develop the geoscientific basis for protection of our natural environment, to exploit and use wisely natural resources for the benefit and a better life for us all. We contribute to the improved awareness of the fragility of our environment and to its respectful treatment in respect of sustainable development within our society.
Most important scientific results Interim report
Most important socioeconomically and culturally relevant results Interim report
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