What are Industrial Minerals and How it is Obtained?
A lot of people don’t know what industrial minerals. These would be things that are spread in our daily lives. It is being used in processed or in natural state in order to make building materials, ceramics, paint, glass, medications, medical devices and a whole lot more in both 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.
Industrial minerals also are very versatile to where most have at least about two or more applications and also span on multiple markets. An example for this would be talc where it is used in plastics, cosmetics and paper. Though industrial minerals are being defined to as non-metallic, there are some that have metallurgical properties, which in fact is the main source of aluminum ore and this is also 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.
Industrial minerals are likewise valued for their chemical and physical properties, which in fact makes them useful for different products and that its price is driven on the demands in the market than by commodities exchange market. Some of the most common reason as to why such minerals continue to grow on the market is because of manufacturing, agriculture, housing markets as well as in recovering construction.
Market demands on industrial minerals likewise influences with how they are mined. Minerals like these are usually extracted mainly through surface mining, which would be less expensive than the underground mining option. Though a certain location is also considered to have good amounts of mineral deposits, the costs on drilling, extractions and transporting raw materials needs to be considered against their current market demands on the market. Industrial minerals in fact are mostly mined from existing sites or perhaps in areas that are already close to infrastructure because the price will not justify the cost of building up infrastructure which is essential in finding a new site.
Before any mining plan is developed, geologists will need to map out mineral distribution of the deposit by evaluating its geological process on what 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.