Mineral Ores

Just know that minerals exist is really irrelevant.  There needs to be a reason we care about minerals when discussing them in Earth Science classes.  One of the main reasons it is important to understand what minerals are and what they are made out of, is so that humans can mine them for some use; many times an industrial use.  Many minerals are very rare and beautiful and we call them gems or gemstones.  Because minerals like quartz come in many different colors, you get many different gemstones.





rose quartz.png
Rose Quartz

Smoky Quartz
Smoky Quartz


Rutilated quartz
Rutilated Quartz

In the next table is a list of other gemstones.

Sapphire Gem
Sapphire from Mineral Corundum

Emerald from Mineral Beryl


Ruby from Mineral Corundum



Opal from Mineraloid (mostly quartz)

Opal: Mineraloid (mostly quartz)

Many minerals are mined for their usefulness of supplying ores.  An ore is just a mineral that can be mined for profit and provide some usefulness.  Bauxite can be mined and then changed into aluminum.  The most important ores in Arizona are Silver and copper.  The value of ores change due to supply and demand.  The less of quantity and the greater demand for a mineral's use will raise the prices up.





Bauxite mine
Bauxite Mine


An example of a very useful, rare, and durable ore is titanium.  Titanium is resistant to water corrosion.  Titanium is used to make steel into stainless steel.  Its used in paints, paper, toothpaste, and plastics. Many of you have had surgery where titanium was added to your body as staples, pins, and screws and you probably have relatives with artificial joints which also use titanium.  It is used in such a way because the body doesn't try to break it down and is not rejected.  Because of it's need titanium tends to be pricey.



titanium ore
Titanium Ore



Titanium Joint
Titanium Knee Joints


In this next activity, you will discover where in the world some of these important ores are mined and find a couple of industrial uses for each of the ores.

Click here for your Mapping Ore assignment if you are a SUSD5 student.  Click here for the map.

You can purchase the Mapping Ore activity at Teacher Pay Teachers for $0.30 cents.