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Mineral Resources

Published on Nov 23, 2015

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Mineral Resources

Mineral resources may be metals, such as gold (AU) silver (AG), and aluminum (AL), or nonmetals, such as sulfur (S) and quartz (capital SiO2)

Deposits of mineral for which minerals and nonmetals can be removed profitably are called ores

1. An ore is a rock that contains minerals that can be mined at a profit.

Mineral resources may be metals, such as gold (AU) silver (AG), and aluminum (AL), or nonmetals, such as sulfur (S) and quartz (capital SiO2)

Deposits of mineral for which minerals and nonmetals can be removed profitably are called ores
Photo by gumtau

2. Igneous processes involve a large body of magma cooling and heavy minerals crystallizing early settling to the bottom of a magma chamber.

Gold, silver, copper mercury, lead, platinum, and nickel are formed in this way

3. Most hydrothermal deposits form from hot, metal-rich fluids left from cooling magma.

Some of the most important mineral deposits form through igneous process and from hydrothermal solutions

Photo by daveynin

4. A placer deposit is an accumulation of valuable minerals formed when eroded minerals settle quickly from
sedimentary processes. (Deposition)

Photo by aresauburn™

5. Placer deposits involve minerals that are heavy, durable and chemically resistant.

Gold is the best known placer deposit. In 1848, placer deposits of gold were discovered in California, sparking the famous California gold rush.

The San Francisco 49ers are a reference to the California Gold Rush, when immigrants from around the United States came to what would become The Golden State to mine placer deposits.
Photo by roy.luck

6. Non metallic mineral resources are extracted and processed either for the nonmetallic elements they contain or for their physical and chemical properties.

Photo by scherre

7. Nonmetallic mineral resources are divided into two broad groups: Building materials and industrial minerals.

For example, Limestone can be used as a building material or can be crushed to make cement. As an industrial mineral. Limestone is used in the manufacture of steel. Farmers use it to neutralize acidic soils.
Photo by poolie

8. Surface mining allows extraction of ores that are close to earth surface.

Photo by lars hammar

9. Underground mining is used to recover ores that are deeper into earth’s surface.

Underground mining is very expensive and dangerous. Fresh air and lights must be brought into the tunnels for the miners, and accidents are far too common.
Photo by alarch

10. Rocks are crushed so that the valuable minerals can be separated from the waste rock.

Real Life Connection
Aluminum in bauxite ore is extracted from the ground and refined to be used in aluminum foil and many other products. The cost of creating a product from a mineral depends on how abundant the mineral is and how much the extraction and refining processes cost.
Photo by LandLearn NSW

Check for understanding.

  • When valuable minerals are taken from stream gravels, this is called
  • a) Strip mining
  • b) Placer mining
  • c) Dredging
  • d) All of the above

b) Placer Mining

Photo by aresauburn™

11. The only sure way to preserve mineral resources is through conservation.

One way to conserve minerals is to use older, more abundant or renewal mere materials in place of minerals. One such substitute is plastics.
Photo by pali_nalu

12. Another way to conserve minerals is by recycling them

Photo by antwerpenR

Check for understanding.

  • When miners blast and tunnel into rock to gain access to ores, this is called ____________.
  • a) Underground mining
  • b) Surface mining
  • c) Mine blowing
  • d) Strip mining

a) Underground mining

Photo by CIFOR

Activity. Round Table

Each student on a table will draw an image representative of the lesson.
Each student will try to guess what the drawing is about.
Each student will have three recorded answers per drawing.
Once all papers are answered each student will explain their work.

Photo by S_v_W

How do hydrothermal deposits form?

Photo by Greg Carley

Hydrothermal deposits form from hot, metal – rich fluids that are left when magma cools. The metal ions collect as mineral deposits in small openings such as rock fractures.

Photo by CaptPiper

Explain how following placer deposits upstream would help prospectors find the original deposit.

Placer deposits are minerals that are carried by moving water from a source upstream. By following the deposit as string, it is possible to find the original deposit.