What are Industrial Minerals and How it is Obtained?
There are still so many people who don’t know what industrial minerals really are. These would be things that are spread in our daily lives. This in fact is being used in natural or in processed state in building materials, glass, medications, ceramics, paint, medical devices and many more in domestic and industrial products.
Industrial metals actually are generally defined to as minerals which are not sources of fuel, metals or gemstones. Some of the most commonly used industrial minerals are limestones, clay, sand, bentonite, gravel, talc, pumice and so many more. Some of the common industrial minerals are in fact being used in construction like sand, gravel and cement, which in fact are known to as aggregates.
An industrial mineral also is versatile with where most of them have at least two or more applications and it spans on multiple markets. An example for this would be talc where it is used in plastics, cosmetics and paper. Though industrial minerals are considered to be non-metallic, there are in fact some which have metallurgical properties, which actually is the main source of aluminum ore and is also being used in making cement and abrasives. There likewise are brite and bentonite that are non-fuel industrial minerals that plays a crucial application on oil and gas extractions for components on drilling fluids.
The industrial minerals also are valued on its chemical and physical traits, making it very useful for different products and that its price is driven by the demands on the market than by the commodity exchange markets. Some of the common things that greatly contributes on the demand and growth of such materials would be in agriculture, manufacturing and on recovering construction and housing markets.
The market demands for industrial minerals likewise influence on how they are being mined. Such minerals are mostly being obtained through surface mining, which is found to be less expensive compared to the underground mining option. Though a location is determined to have good mineral deposits, the costs of extractions and drilling and transporting the raw materials should also be considered against the current market demand for such mineral. The industrial minerals are usually being mined from existing sites or perhaps at areas which are close already to infrastructure because the price doesn’t justify the cost in building infrastructure that’s crucial for finding a new site.
Before a mining plan is developed, geologists will need to map out mineral distributions of the deposit by implementing evaluations on the geological process which formed them. After it has been determined that there’s a sufficient quantity of minerals that are present and a cost-effective mining could start on it, the geologist will then study the lithology and also other geochemical data in order to control and direct the entire mining process.