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Mineral resources

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Glenn Dolphin

on 5 December 2017

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Transcript of Mineral resources

Where do they come from?
What do we use them for?
"Geo-kickbacks" or
Externalizing the Cost
Our mineral resources
What is a mineral?
Need to take dispersed elements and concentrate them (work against entropy)
By density (sedimentary and igneous)
Chemical weathering (bauxite)
Hydrothermal fluids (replacement, filling)
Biological processes (bird guano and phosphate)
The role of water:
1. Many elements are soluble in superheated fluids. When these concentrated waters migrate and cool, they deposit mineral concentrations (Cu, Mb, Au, Sn, Pb). Associated with plutons, or deep sea hydrothermal vents.
2. Dissolved minerals in evaporating water precipitate, creating evaporite minerals (halite, sylvite, gypsum)
3. Reducing waters (anoxic) will also dissolve elements and then precipitate them when water becomes oxidizing. (BIF)
What is an ore?
How do we access them?
Pits, quarries, mines
Smelting and the mad hatter
mad hatter: http://fpldreadersservices.wordpress.com/tag/stephen-king/

Phossy jaw: http://mrsverlaine.files.wordpress.com/2013/11/phossy.jpg

Nauru on globe and satellite photo: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Nauru

Nauru mining: http://www.arcticphoto.co.uk/supergal/nau/nau00/nau0024-15.htm

Coltan mining flow chart: http://ugandan-life.blogspot.com/2012/09/bloody-smart-phones.html

Coltan miner: http://www.thestar.com/news/insight/2011/07/03/coltan_a_minefield_in_the_congo.html

Coltan and phone: http://resourcesafrica.webstarts.com/congo1.html

Mineral usage: http://minerals.usgs.gov/granted.html

satellite imagery map: http://pubs.usgs.gov/sir/2009/5117/SIR09-5117.pdf

Mineral halo: http://www.mdru.ubc.ca/home/research/CAF/index.php
mineral staining: http://shadonrv.blogspot.ca/2013/08/pictured-rocks-and-kayak-repair.html
Tanzanite ring: http://www.thegemstudio.co.uk/shop/Rings/Vintage-Tanzanite-Diamond-18ct-White-Gold-Ring-D11250.html
The developing world, and ethics
How did our resources somehow get on somebody else's land?
Phosphate and Nauru
How do we find them?

- How might the topography indicate ore body location?
- What about satellite imagery (geophotography)?
- What information does geophysics and boreholes give us?

- Beautiful gem stone
- Mined by 8-12 year old boys
- Mines are deep, poorly constructed, and subject to flooding.
- Children are paid (lunch), sometimes, or when they find something.
- Hundreds of children die per year in the mines.
Naturally occurring, crystalline solid with uniform molecular structure and characteristics
A body of mineral resources that can be extracted, economically, for use
We need minerals for health
We use them to enhance our standard of living

Most utilized elements/minerals
iron (95% of all metal resources)
Heat and reducing agent gives oxygen, sulfur, etc. something to bind to instead of the metal. It is a very energy intensive process. Recycling requires about 10% the energy or less.
Airborne Visible InfraRed Imaging Specrometer
1 Kilometer

- How is it like other ore bodies?
- What are associated minerals?
- Are there "envelope" or "halo" minerals?
- Are there clues from weathering and erosion (staining, secondary mineral development, traces in rivers or along glacial paths)?
- What does the geochemistry (rock, soil, groundwater, vegetation, etc.) indicate?
It all comes from the earth.

It all, eventually,
goes back to the earth.
You can't make something from nothing.
You can't make nothing from something.
Bingham Canyon, Utah
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