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Copper

Copper (Cu) is a malleable, ductile, reddish metal that melts at 1083°C. Copper has both a high electric and thermal conductivity. Only silver is a better thermal and electrical conductor.

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Nickel

The major contemporary use for nickel is as an alloying agent. Nickel is present in some 3000 different alloys that are used in more than 250 000 end-use applications. The most popular alloy in which nickel is used is stainless steel (seeIRON AND STEEL INDUSTRY).

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Clay

Clay is the common name for a complex group of industrial MINERALS, each characterized by different mineralogy, occurrence and uses.

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Uranium

Uranium oxide was first identified in 1789 by M.H. Klaproth in the MINERAL pitchblende, but its distinctive property of radioactivity was discovered much later (1896) by Henri Becquerel.

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Asbestos (Mineral)

The name asbestos comes from a Greek word meaning "inextinguishable" (often mistaken to mean "incombustible"). Asbestos is a collective term that is used to designate 2 separate groups of silicates: the serpentine group and the amphibole group.

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Iron Ore

Its most important mineral forms are magnetite (Fe3O4, 72.4% Fe), hematite (Fe2O3, 69.9% Fe) and siderite (FeCO3, 48.29% Fe). In Brazil, some ore that contains practically no other minerals can grade as high as 68% Fe, but the crude ore mined in Canada grades between 30 and 44% Fe.

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Cadmium

Cadmium (Cd) is a soft, ductile, silvery white metal that melts at 320.9°C and is present in the earth's crust at 0.1-0.5 parts per million. The most common cadmium MINERAL, greenockite (CdS), is generally found in zinc-bearing ores and is recovered as a by-product during processing.

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Limestone

Slaked lime is quicklime combined with water; this hydrated lime is then sized to meet customer specifications.

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Metallurgy

Metallurgy is the art, science and technology of turning metals and alloys (i.e., materials consisting of two or more metals) into forms suitable for practical use.

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Graphite

Natural graphite appears to have been created through the decomposition of organic material contained in LIMESTONE during metamorphism. The 3 main types of natural graphite are microcrystalline (known commercially as amorphous), crystalline flake and lump graphite.

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Sulphur

In Canada, elemental sulphur is recovered from the processing of sour natural gas with a high hydrogen sulphide (H2S) content, and from the refining of high sulphur-bearing crude and heavy oil.

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Potash

Potash is an alkaline potassium compound most commonly used in fertilizers. It refers to a variety of salts produced through mining of minerals and chemical manufacturing. Canada is the world's largest potash producer and exporter.

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Greenstone

Greenstone, general term for dark green, compact metamorphic rocks formed by the alteration of dark-coloured IGNEOUS ROCKS. Basalt, a common example, is a major component of the greenstone belts of the Canadian SHIELD. These belts contain the Shield's principal GOLD and base-metal mines.

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Salt

Sodium chloride (NaCl), or common salt, is ubiquitous in the environment. In its solid form, salt crystallizes as colourless cubes and is called rock salt. Salt is also known to geologists as halite. Its crystal structure was the first to be determined by X-rays.

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Coal in Canada

Coal is a fossil fuel that has been used as a source of energy in Canada since the 18th century. Canada is home to 0.6 per cent of the world’s coal resources. Most of the country’s coal reserves (over 95 per cent) are found in AlbertaBritish Columbia and Saskatchewan. In recent years, the environmental movement has opposed the coal industry for disrupting local ecosystems, creating adverse health effects and for its large contribution to the carbon-dioxide emissions that drive climate change. In an effort to curb harmful emissions, the federal government has signalled its intention to phase out traditional coal-fired electricity by 2030, and Alberta has a plan to achieve the same goal as a province.

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Diamond

Gem-quality diamonds crystallize as octahedrons (8 faces), trisoctahedrons (24 faces), hexoctahedrons (48 faces) or a combination of these. Diamond owes its supreme standing among all the gemstones to 4 specific attributes.

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Nepheline Syenite

Nepheline syenite is a white to light grey medium-grained IGNEOUS ROCK. It consists mostly of soda feldspar, nepheline and potash feldspar, accessory magnesium and iron-rich minerals.

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Sand and Gravel

Sand and gravel are unconsolidated, granular mineral materials produced by the natural disintegration of rock caused by weathering. The terms sand, gravel, clay and silt relate to grain size rather than composition. Sand is material passing through a number 4 (4.

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Tungsten

Tungsten (W), also called Wolfram, lapis ponderosus or Heavy Stone, is a silver-grey metallic element with the highest melting point of any metal (3410° C). Tungsten has a high density, high strength at elevated temperatures and extreme hardness.

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