• A mineral is a substance that occurs naturally and has a definite chemical composition. They are distributed unevenly and are concentrated in an area. They can be classified on basis of physical properties like colour, density, hardness.
• Rocks: A rock is an aggregate of one or more minerals, without definite composition of constituents of minerals.
• Ores: Rocks from which minerals are mined are called ores.
Types of minerals
• There are more than three thousand minerals. On basis of composition, they are classified broadly as metallic and non-metallic minerals.
Metallic Ferrous Non-metallic Non-ferrous
• They contain metals in raw form. They are substances that conduct heat and electricity and have shine. Examples include Iron ore, bauxite, manganese ore. They are classified further as ferrous and non- ferrous.
• Ferrous minerals [Contains Iron]
(1) Iron ore
• Non-Ferrous minerals [Do not contain Iron]
• Non-metallic minerals have no metals. Examples include Limestone, mica, gypsum, coal & petroleum.
Extraction of Minerals
• Minerals are drawn out by mining, drilling or quarrying.
• Mining is process of taking out minerals from rocks buried under Earth’s surface.
• Open-cast mining: Minerals that lie at shallow depths are taken out by removing surface layer by process of open-cast mining.
• Shaft mining: Deep bores, known as shafts, have to be made to reach mineral deposits which lie at great depths by process of shafts mining.
• Drilling: Petroleum and natural gas occurs far below earth’s surface. Deep wells are bored to take them out, this process is known as drilling.
• Quarrying: Those minerals that lie near surface are simply dug out, by process called quarrying.
Distribution of minerals
• Generally, metallic minerals are found in igneous and metamorphic rocks. Iron-ore in north Sweden, copper & nickel deposits in Ontario, Canada, iron, nickel, chromites & platinum in South Africa are some of examples of minerals found in igneous and metamorphic rocks.
• Sedimentary rocks contain non-metallic minerals like limestone. Limestone deposits of Caucasus region of France, manganese deposits of Georgia and Ukraine and phosphate beds of Algeria are some of examples.
• Mineral fuels such as coal and petroleum are found in sedimentary strata.
• China and India have large iron ore deposits.
• continent produces more than half of world’s tin.
• China, Malaysia & Indonesia are among world’s leading producers of tin.
• China leads in production of lead, antimony & tungsten.
• Asia has deposits of manganese, bauxite, nickel, zinc & copper.
• Europe is leading producer of iron-ore in world.
• Russia, Ukraine, Sweden & France are countries with large deposits of iron ore.
• Minerals deposits of lead, zinc, copper, manganese & nickel are found in eastern Europe and European Russia.
• Africa is world’s largest producer of diamonds, gold & platinum.
• South Africa, Zimbabwe & Zaire produce a large portion of world’s gold.
• Copper, iron ore, chromium, uranium, cobalt & bauxite are some other minerals found in Africa.
• Oil is found in Nigeria, Libya & Angola.
• mineral deposits in North America are distributed in three zones:
(1) Canadian region north of Great Lakes,
(2) Appalachian region
(3) mountain ranges of west.
• Iron ore, nickel, gold, uranium & copper are mined in Canadian Shield Region, coal in Appalachian region.
• Western Cordilleras have vast deposits of copper, zinc, lead, gold & silver.
• largest producer of high grade iron-ore in world is Brazil.
• Chile and Peru are leading producers of copper.
• Brazil and Bolivia are among world’s largest producers of tin.
• South America has large deposits of gold, silver, zinc, chromium, manganese, bauxite, mica, platinum, asbestos & diamond.
• In Venezuela, Argentina, Chile, Peru & Columbia mineral oil is found.
• largest producer of bauxite in world is Australia. This is a leading producer of gold, diamond, iron ore, tin & nickel. This is rich in copper, zinc, lead & manganese.
• Kalgoorlie and Coolgardie areas of western Australia have largest deposits of gold.
• A significant amount of deposits of coal in Trans antarctic Mountains and iron near Prince Charles Mountains of East Antarctica is forecasted.
• Iron ore, gold, silver & oil are present in commercial quantities.
Distribution in India
• Iron: India has deposits of high grade iron ore, which is found mainly in Jharkhand, Odisha,Chhattisgarh, Madhya Pradesh, Goa, Maharashtra and Karnataka.
• Bauxite: Major bauxite producing areas in India are Jharkhand, Odisha, Chhattisgarh, Madhya Pradesh, Gujarat, Maharashtra and Tamil Nadu.
• Mica: Deposits of Mica are mainly found in Jharkhand, Bihar, Andhra Pradesh and Rajasthan. India is largest producer and exporter of mica in world.
• Manganese: Manganese deposits in India lie in Maharashtra, Madhya Pradesh, Chhattisgarh, Odisha, Karnataka & Andhra Pradesh.
• Copper: This is mainly produced in Rajasthan, Madhya Pradesh, Jharkhand, Karnataka & Andhra Pradesh regions.
• Limestone: Major limestone producing states in India are Bihar, Jharkhand, Odisha, Madhya Pradesh, Chhattisgarh, Rajasthan, Gujarat & Tamil Nadu.
• Gold: Kolar mines in Karnataka have deposits of gold in India.
• These mines are among deepest in world.
• Salt: This is obtained from seas, lakes & rocks.
• India is one of world’s leading producers and exporters of salt.
Uses of Minerals
• Minerals are used in various industries ranging from jewellery, coins, & computer sector to automobiles, buildings, kitchen utensils .
• formation of minerals takes thousands of years to be formed. formation rate is much lower than its consumption. It has become essential to minimise wastage of minerals during process of mining. Another method through which minerals can be saved is by recycling metals.
• With ever changing lifestyles, power is needed in our day to day lives. From industry, agriculture, transport to communication and defence we need power to function.
• Power resources are grouped into conventional and non-conventional resources.
• These sources are ones that are being used for a long time. Examples include: Firewood and fossil fuels which include coal, petroleum & natural gas that are main sources of conventional energy.
• Due to overuse of fossil fuels, there is a shortage being experienced. consumption is higher than its formation and it causes pollution.
• Fossil fuel: Remains of plants and animals when buried under earth for millions of years got converted by heat and pressure into fossil fuels.
• Petroleum: This is found between layers of rocks and is drilled from oil fields located in off-shore and coastal areas. From petroleum variety of products like petrol, kerosene, wax, plastics & lubricants are obtained. Petroleum and its derivatives are known as Black Gold. chief petroleum producing countries are Iran, Iraq, Saudi Arabia and Qatar. other major producers are USA, Russia, Venezuela, and Algeria. In India leading producers are Digboi in Assam, Bombay High in Mumbai and deltas of Krishna and Godavari rivers.
• Natural gas is found with petroleum deposits and is released when crude oil is brought to surface. This is used as a domestic and industrial fuel.
• Russia, Norway, UK & Netherlands are some of major producers of natural gas.
• In India, Jaisalmer, Krishna Godavari delta, Tripura & some areas offshore in Mumbai have natural gas deposits.
• Coal: This is most abundant fossil fuel. This is used as a domestic fuel, in industries such as iron and steel, steam engines and to generate electricity. Electricity from coal is known as thermal power. Coal is referred to as Buried Sunshine. World leading coal producers are China, USA, Germany, Russia, South Africa and France. coal producing areas of India are Raniganj, Jharia, Dhanbad & Bokaro in Jharkhand.
Non-conventional Sources of Energy
• There is an urgent need for using non-conventional sources like solar energy, wind energy and tidal energy which are renewable.
• Solar energy: Solar energy trapped from sun can be used in solar cells to produce electricity.
• Wind Energy: Wind is an inexhaustible source of energy.
• high speed winds rotate wind mill which is connected to a generator to generate electricity.
• Nuclear power: This is obtained from energy stored in nuclei of atoms of naturally occurring radioactive elements like uranium and thorium.
(1) In India Jharkhand and Rajasthan have large deposits of Uranium.
(2) Thorium is found in large quantities in monazite sands of Kerala.
(3) nuclear power stations in India are situated in Kalpakkam in Tamil Nadu, Tarapur in Maharashtra, Ranapratap Sagar near Kota in Rajasthan, Narora in Uttar Pradesh and Kaiga in Karnataka.
• Tidal Energy: Energy generated from tides is called tidal energy. Russia, France & Gulf of Kuchchh in India have huge tidal mill farms.
• Geothermal Energy: heat energy obtained from earth is known as geothermal energy.
(1) USA has world’s largest geothermal power plants followed by New Zealand, Iceland, Philippines and Central America.
(2) In India, geothermal plants are situated in Manikaran in Himachal Pradesh and Puga Valley in Ladakh.
• Biogas: Organic waste such as dead plant and animal material, animal dung and kitchen waste which can be converted into a gaseous fuel is known as biogas.