Special Terms Of Mining Engineering - Part 1
Mineral : A naturally occurring inorganic substances, usually crystalline, with relatively definite chemical composition and physical characteristics. Although coal in its rock like form is originally organic, it is sometimes classified as a mineral.
Metal : Any one of a group of chemical elements with similar properties. Metals are usually shiny, malleable, and ductile. They all conduct heat and electricity and can replace hydrogen in certain compounds. Iron, copper, gold, silver, and aluminum are common metals.
Crystal : A solid substance with a symmetrical, repetitive arrangement of surfaces. Quartz, a compound frequently found in rock and sand, has a crystalline structure, like a diamond.
Rock : Hard material on the outer crust of the earth consisting of one or more minerals. There are three kinds of rock : igneous (a familiar example is granite), sedimentary (a familiar example is limestone), and metamorphic (a familiar example is marble).
Mining : The process of extracting minerals from the earth. A mine is the place where this process takes place.
Quarrying : The process of excavating rock to obtain stone usually used for building purposes. A quarry is the place where the process is carried on.
Compound : A chemical state in which two or more elements are joined together. Quartz is a compound of one particle or atom of silicon and two of oxygen; its chemical name is silicon dioxide.
Ore : A mineral compound that contains a metal or some other element that can be extracted for profit.
Concentration : The process of separating metal from rock in an ore.
Refining : Removing impurities from metal that has been concentrated from its ore. The entire process of extraction, concentration, and purification is often referred to as refining.
Smelting : A process for extracting or refining metal that involves heating until the metal melts.
Outcrop : A rock formation exposed on the surface of the earth.
Shaft : A vertical opening into the earth. Shaft mining is underground mining.
Vein or Seam : A mineral deposit between layers of rock under the ground. Vein usually refers to a metallic ore and seam to coal.
Meteorite : A mineral mass that has entered the earth from space; it often consists of iron or iron and nickel.
Slag : Impurities separated from a metal during the smelting process.
Coke : A product of coal from which gases have been removed by heating; it burns at very high heat.
Electrolysis or Electrolytic Process : A method of reducing ores or refining metals by passing an electric current through a liquid mixture or solution.
Fault : A break in a body of rock where layers or types of rock have moved in relation to each other.
Fossil : A trace of something that lived long ago. Coal, petroleum, and natural gas are called fossil fuels because they were formed from organisms which lived millions of years ago.
Paleontology : The scientific study of evidence of of prehistoric life based on fossil remains.
Topsoil : The upper layer of soil normally suitable for agricultural purposes.
To be continued ...