Minerals and Energy Resources
Minerals are naturally occurring compounds on the Earth. Minerals are generally solid, inorganic, and have a crystal structure. They occur naturally as a result of geological processes. A mineral might be composed of a single chemical element or, more commonly, a mixture of many elements. Minerals and energy resources are very different in terms of how they arise and what they are utilized for.
The mineral formation is influenced by physical and chemical circumstances, resulting in a vast range of hues, hardness, crystal formations, luster, and density of specific minerals. Minerals are an essential element of our lives; practically everything is built of minerals, such as a tall structure or a large ship. Machines are constructed of minerals, just as railway lines and road paving.
Mode of Occurrence of Minerals
As we study Minerals are usually found in ore, This term ore is used to describe the accumulation of any mineral mixed with other elements. The aggregation of any mineral combined with other components is referred to as ore.
The following minerals were discovered:
- Minerals can be found in cracks, fissures, and joints in metamorphic and igneous rocks. They are divided into two groups based on concentration. The veins are the smaller ones, while the lodes are the bigger ones. Minerals in a molten/liquid condition are driven upwards through the earth’s holes to produce them. They harden into hard minerals when they solidify.
- Zinc, copper, lead, and other metals are examples of this class.
- A variety of minerals can be found in the bed or strata of sedimentary rocks. Deposition, accumulation, and concentration in horizontal strata have resulted in their formation.
- This is how coal and various types of iron ore are created. Evaporation forms a category of sedimentary rocks such as gypsum, potash salt, and sodium salt, especially in dry climates. Weathering creates minerals like bauxite. Surface rocks are decomposed and soluble elements are removed, leaving a residue bulk.
- Water does not erode minerals such as alluvial deposits, which are located on the valley floor and at the base of the hills. This is how gold, silver, and platinum are discovered.
- Magnesium nodules can be found in abundance on the ocean floor.
- Mineral distribution is highly asymmetrical:
- Minerals in the Deccan: The peninsular rock contains the majority of the deposits of coal, metallic minerals, mica, and many other non-metallic minerals.
- Minerals in India’s western and eastern regions: The majority of India’s petroleum resources are found in sedimentary rocks in the western and eastern regions, namely Gujarat and Assam.
- Minerals in Rajasthan: Rajasthan, with its peninsular rock structure, contains deposits of various non-ferrous minerals.
Types of Minerals
The types of minerals are mentioned below:
Metallic minerals have a sheen to them and are made up of metals. These minerals can be mined and used as a possible metal supply. Metal minerals include the following: Metallic minerals include manganese, iron ore, and bauxite, which can be classified as ferrous or non-ferrous. Non-ferrous minerals have no iron, while ferrous minerals do.
Ferrous minerals are those that have magnetic properties because they include iron in the form of hydroxides, carbonates, or sulfides. These minerals are essential for a country’s metallurgical sector to thrive.
India is bestowed with abundant resources of iron ore. Magnetite is the finest iron ore with high content of iron up to 70% and has magnetic qualities. Some major iron belts in India are The Odisha-Jharkhand belt, the Durg-Bastar-Chandrapur belt, etc.
It is used mostly for the manufacturing of steel and ferro-manganese alloy and nearly 10 kg of manganese is required to manufacture 1 tonne of steel and is also used for manufacturing bleaching powder, and paints.
Non-ferrous metals are non-ferrous alloys or metals that do not include iron. Other non-ferrous elements are non-ferrous, with the exception of iron (Fe), which is frequently referred to as ferrite after the Latin word Ferrum, which means “iron.”
Nonferrous metals are more costly than ferrous metals, but they offer desirable characteristics such as lightweight (aluminum), high conductivity (copper), non-magnetic qualities, and corrosion resistance (zinc). A non-ferrous material utilized in the iron and steel industry is bauxite, which is used as a flux in blast furnaces.
It is a malleable, ductile, and good conductor of heat and electricity. It is mainly used in electrical cables, electronics, and chemical industries. Some important copper sites are the Balaghat mines in Madhya Pradesh, the Khetri mines in Rajasthan, and so forth.
Bauxite is formed by the decomposition of a wide variety of rocks rich in aluminum silicates and aluminum is obtained from bauxite. Deposits are mostly found in the Amarkantak plateau, Maikal hills, and Bilaspur-Katni.
Their chemical makeup does not contain any extractable metals. Non-metallic minerals include limestone, gypsum, and mica. Bauxite ore is found largely in worn rocks. Iron ore is converted into iron metal and never be found in its purest form and must be derived from iron ore by removing impurities.
Nonmetallic minerals include sand, gravel, limestone, clay, and marble. These materials lack metallic properties such as good electric and thermal conductivity, brightness, rigor, and malleability, which are required by many enterprises. Production of cement, ceramics, glass, and lime are some common uses.
Mica is a mineral that is made of a series of plates or leaves and it can be clear, black, green, red, yellow, or brown. It is an indispensable mineral for electic industries and has excellent di-electric strength, low power loss, and insulating factors. Deposits of Mica are found on the northern edge of the Chota Nagpur plateau.
Conservation of Minerals
Minerals are a non-renewable type of resource and it takes many thousands of years for the formation and also for the concentration of minerals. The continued extraction of the ores leads to the depletion of these minerals and so it is very important for us to take necessary steps for the conservation of minerals and use them in a planned and in a more sustainable manner.
Energy is required in every activity of daily life whether it’s cooking, providing light and heat, propelling vehicles, and driving machinery in industries. The resources used to power run the industries are called energy resources.
Classification of Energy Resources
Energy resources can be classified into the following types:
Conventional sources of Energy
They have been used for a long time such as firewood, cattle dung, coal and petroleum, natural gas, and electricity both hydel and thermal, etc; are known as the conventional sources of energy.
The breakdown of dead plants produces coal, an ignitable sedimentary rock. Carbon makes up the majority of coal, with traces of hydrogen, Sulphur, oxygen, and nitrogen thrown in for good measure.Deep burial’s heat and pressure convert dead plant elements into peat, which is eventually transformed into coal over millions of years.
Coal is utilised in the production of iron and steel, as well as other industrial operations. Coal is widely used as an energy source. Following the invention of the steam engine, the use of coal increased dramatically. In 2020, coal accounted for roughly a quarter of the world’s primary energy and more than a third of its electricity.
Petroleum, commonly known as crude oil, is a naturally occurring fuel that is extracted and transformed into a variety of petroleum-based fuels. Fractional distillation is used to separate the different components of a petroleum mixture. Gasoline, propane, kerosene, tar, and other items are made from petroleum. Aside from carbon, oil contains a number of other molecules, and refining the oil eliminates some of these substances. We use oil for a multitude of things. Half of the world’s petroleum is used to make gasoline.
Natural gas is a hydrocarbon gas mostly composed of methane, with trace quantities of carbon dioxide, nitrogen, hydrogen sulphides, and helium. Natural gas is a nonrenewable gaseous resource that, like crude oil deposits, can be discovered beneath the earth’s crust. Natural gas is mostly composed of methane, although it can also contain propane, ethane, and butane. Because methane has no odor, it is mixed with a chemical to make it smell so that a leak may be spotted.
Electric energy can be renewable or non-renewable, depending on the resource utilised to create it. Electricity, like oil from the ground, is not a naturally occurring energy phenomenon; it must be created and refined in power plants using other energy sources. Power is frequently created by processing plants that burn fossil fuels and “create” power in exchange for the fuel used. The turbines that generate electricity are fueled by non-renewable, limited energy sources such as coal, oil, or gasoline. Electricity may be generated via solar, wind, or geothermal energy. These infinite powers can be replenished at any time.
Non-conventional source of energy
These sources recently come in high use such as wind power, solar energy, tidal energy, geothermal energy, atomic energy, and biogas energy. Non-Conventional sources are freely available as well as exhaustible and renewable.
Geothermal energy is a type of renewable energy that comes from the Earth’s core. The heat generated during the planet’s formation, as well as radioactive decay of components, are to blame. The temperature difference between the earth’s core and its surface encourages thermal energy to flow continuously from the core to the planet’s surface. Wells excavated a mile down into underground reservoirs to acquire steam and hot water, which is then used to drive turbines coupled to power generators, are used to create electricity from geothermal energy.
The gravitational forces of the sun and moon, together with the earth’s rotation, cause sea levels to rise and fall in cycles. It frequently occurs twice in one spot on a lunar day. When the water level rises, it is called “high tide,” and when it falls, it is called “low tide.” The natural rise and fall of tides, which is driven by the gravitational interaction of the Earth, sun, and moon, produces tidal energy.
Tidal energy may be converted into useable forms of energy, such as electricity, by placing appropriately built generators in strategic locations.
Wind energy is the process of harnessing the wind to generate electricity. The turbine’s output increases as the wind speed increases, until it reaches its maximum capacity. Wind farms require wind that is strong and steady. The most of these species may be found at high altitudes. Wind turbines work by rotating blades against the wind to create electricity. Commercial wind turbines capture rotational energy and use it to power a generator to generate electricity. Wind power is a type of energy conversion in which turbines transform kinetic energy from the wind into mechanical or electrical energy.
Solar energy is absorbed in sun plants, which convert it directly into electrical energy. Photosynthesis is responsible for the conversion of solar energy. It is the most important non-conventional energy source since it is non-polluting, ecologically friendly, and abundant. In terms of climate, India is classified as a tropical country. It has a great deal of potential for capturing solar energy. It is used for a variety of purposes, including generating energy (through photovoltaic panels) and supplying heat. It is rapidly gaining popularity as a fuel source in rural and remote places, reducing people’s dependency on firewood and drug cakes. Solar cells are made from metal and semiconductors, or two semiconductors.
Conservation of Energy Resources
Every major area of an economy; which include agriculture, industry, transport, commercial and domestic; needs inputs of energy to sustain itself. There is a need to develop a sustainable way of managing energy development. Some of the important ways of conservation of energy resources are listed below:
- Using public transport instead of individual ones
- Using power-saving devices.
- Using non-conventional sources of energy.
FAQs on Mineral and Energy Resources
Question 1: What are the advantages of mineral resources?
The minerals are non-renweable natural resources that are vital for construction, manufacturing and energy industries.
Question 2: What are the major minerals found in India?
India’s major mineral resources are coal, iron ore, manganese ore, mica and bauxite.
Question 3: What are the uses of tidal energy?
The importance of tidal energy is the consistency, long term economy, intermittence and permanence.
Question 4: What are the 5 types of mineral resources?
5 types of mineral resources are mostly hydrothermal, magmatic, sedimentary,residual and placer.
Question 5: Which minerals are called energy minerals?
The ones which can be used as raw materials in energy industry are called energy minerals. This include oil, gas, bituminous sandstone and limestone.
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