Mining is the process of extracting precious minerals or other geological resources underneath the earth’s surface and they usually come from a seam, a vein, an orebody or a lode. More often than not, these deposits interest a miner for economic reasons. That is why they go through the tedious process of mining just to get it. Examples of ores that have been recovered in the past by miners are dimension stone, gravel, coal, oil, gemstones, metals, shale, potash, clay and rock salt. Mining is usually the recourse when the material needed cannot be artificially made inside a factory or a laboratory or if it cannot be grown and harvested via agricultural means.
The mining process is divided into two digging types: there’s the surface mining and the sub-surface or underground mining. At present, the former is more common compared to the latter and eighty five percent of the minerals we see today, which includes natural gas and petroleum are extracted through the surface mining technique. The same technique goes for all ninety eight percent of all metallic ores.
Let’s talk more in depth about surface mining and sub-surface mining.
Surface mining is a performed to remove or strip of surface dirt and vegetation. If there is a need, it will also remove bedrock. The reason for this is pretty obvious, so the miner can access ore deposits that are buried underneath. The techniques utilized in surface mining are the following: open-pit mining. Open-pit mining recovers materials from the name itself, an opening in the ground. Another example technique known in surface mining is quarrying. It is more or less similar to an open-pit mining only that it involves clay, stone and sand. Strip mining is another technique in surface mining and it involves ‘stripping’ the outer layers to gain access to seams and ores underneath the surface. Another common technique is called mountaintop removal. This is pretty much self-explanatory and it’s usually implemented for coal mining. This technique consists of removing the top layer of a mountain to gain access to ore deposits. And then there’s the landfill mining. This technique involves landfills that are dug up and processed.
Sub-surface mining is the second technique, which involves digging up shafts and tunnels into the ground so the miners can reach ore deposits buried underneath. It is through these shafts and tunnels that waste rock and ores are brought up into the earth’s surface. Sub-surface mining are classified according to the shafts used or the technique or method utilized to get to the ores or mineral deposits. Slope mining is a category that makes use of sloping shafts. Drift mining makes use of horizontal tunnels whereas shaft mining makes use of vertical shafts.
One very important thing to remember in mining is safety. Mining is a dangerous job because it necessitates accurateness. That is why you need to equip yourself not only with knowledge but also with the protective gears needed to do these processes and techniques. You can visit http://www.parasyn.com.au/ to know more about the products and services they offer specifically to the mining industry.