the proces of mining gold and machinery requred

9 step process for discovering, mining & refining gold

9 step process for discovering, mining & refining gold

In modern times though, mining for gold is a much more intensive, yet sophisticated process. Most surface, or alluvial gold has been found, which is why gold is mainly mined from the earth today. Its largely a matter of technology and requires much expertise and elaborate equipment.

Mining for gold today can essentially be broken down into 9 steps. Continue reading to learn more about how gold is discovered, how its brought out of the ground and how its refined to produce beautiful gold coins, bars, jewelry and other items.

The first step is discovering where gold deposits may be. Geologists use special geology maps to look for promising areas to explore further. They examine physical and chemical characteristics of surface rocks to determine if any gold is in the ground beneath.

Once some promising areas are identified through their geological characteristics, targets for drill testing are outlined using a variety of techniques, including remote sensing, geophysics and geochemistry (both air and ground based).

Next, rock samples are taken through drill testing and analyzed. Geologists and mining engineers use these samples to determine if gold actually exists, the size of the deposit and the quality of gold in the ground beneath. This information is used to determine if enough gold exists under the surface to make mining worthwhile.

If its determined the amount and quality of deposits makes mining worthwhile, engineers will next determine the type of mine thats needed, any physical obstacles and the impact the mine will have on the surrounding environment.

Before any mining can take place, infrastructure like roads and processing facilities must be constructed. Even the simplest open-pit mines can take up to a year to construct before any mining can occur. And since many potential mines are in remote areas, entire infrastructures like roads, administrative offices, equipment storage areas and even whole towns have to be built. Much of the time, it can be up to 5 years between the times discovery is made to when actual mining takes place.

Once ore is extracted, processing it into pure gold must be done. Ore is first crushed and then undergoes various processes depending on the nature of associated minerals. Processing low-grade ore is relatively simple while higher grades require more extensive processing.

Once basic processing is done, the ore is taken to a refinery where the remaining impurities are stripped out. Crude gold is melted and treated with chloride, which converts any remaining foreign metals to chloride which will then drift off the gold. The result is 99.5% pure gold, which is then cast into electrodes (known as anodes) where it is then placed into an electrolytic cell. A current is then passed through the cell, with the end product being 99.99% pure gold.

After a few years, gold reserves in the mine will be exhausted. In the old days, the mine would be boarded up and abandoned. Today though, a reclamation project is done to try and return the land to its previous natural state as much as possible anyway.

As you can see, the process of taking metal ore from the earth and converting it to gold bullion is quite extensive and requires a lot front-end investment and time. In the end though, we get these shiny coins and bars to enjoy.

Gold miners too take special care to make the impact of mining for gold as light as possible. Reclaiming land to its previous natural state is the final and perhaps most important step to ensuring the process of obtaining gold doesnt result in permanent damage to the landscape.

The post on the 9 steps of how gold is refined, has helped me to relate the process of Gods divine will has a child of God, when one is choosen by God, he or she has to go through a process in order to accomplish the will of God and also to embrace others in knowing God. I was inspired spiritually by God in researching the steps and process gold has to go through to become the finest gold.

It seems that many have thought on the gold mentioned in the Bible and having done so, think further about the processing of it spiritually in ones own life. The temple was covered in gold. We go through processes in our lives too so that God can clothe us in His righteousness not our own, and it is a costly process and time-consuming but the value of it will one day be revealed not now but when the process is completed in His time.

calcite mining | processing equipment | flow chart | cases - jxsc

calcite mining | processing equipment | flow chart | cases - jxsc

Uses Calcite is the mineral component of limestone which is used primarily as construction aggregates, and in production of lime and cement. Limestone also is used in a variety of commercial applications including: road construction, riprap and jetty stone, filter stone, railroad ballast, poultry grit, mineral food, sugar processing, flux stone in steel production, glass manufacture, sulfur dioxide removal in power plants, coal mine dusting to prevent explosions, acid water treatment, asphalt fillers and refractory stone.

Mining Equipment Manufacturers, Our Main Products: Gold Trommel, Gold Wash Plant, Dense Media Separation System, CIP, CIL, Ball Mill, Trommel Scrubber, Shaker Table, Jig Concentrator, Spiral Separator, Slurry Pump, Trommel Screen.

gold flotation | gold mining process | gold mining equipment for sale

gold flotation | gold mining process | gold mining equipment for sale

Mining Equipment Manufacturers, Our Main Products: Gold Trommel, Gold Wash Plant, Dense Media Separation System, CIP, CIL, Ball Mill, Trommel Scrubber, Shaker Table, Jig Concentrator, Spiral Separator, Slurry Pump, Trommel Screen.

gold processing methods & gold ore extraction

gold processing methods & gold ore extraction

Of all the methods of extracting gold & processing it from its ore, I used a few to evaluate two principal flowsheets in this case study. The flowsheets utilized operations that involved flotation,cyanidation and gravity concentration. Tests that mirror each of these unitoperations were utilized to evaluate the principal flowsheets. This page offers a comparative review of gold recovery methods:

The feed gold and silver was amenable to gravity separation andflotation. However, the subsequent cyanidation of the concentratesdid not provide any significant improvement, on average, overWhole-of-Ore CIL testing. The gravity/flotation flowsheet withcyanidation of the respective concentrates recovered between 30and 77%of the gold in feed, with an average of about 59percent across all eight lithology composites. Whole-of-ore CILextracted between 28 and 79 percent of the gold in feed, with anaverage of about 61 percent. These results would indicate there is some degree of refractory gold, which would requirealternative processing to recover.

Silver recoveries were higher using the flotation flowsheet withsubsequent cyanidation of the flotation concentrates. Recoveriesvaried between 59 and 81 percent of the silver in the feed, with anaverage of about 69 percent. Whole-of-ore cyanidation extractedbetween 29 and 47 percent, for an average of about 38 percent.

bitcoin mining definition

bitcoin mining definition

Bitcoin mining is performed by high-powered computers that solve complex computational math problems; these problems are so complex that they cannot be solved by hand and are complicated enough to tax even incredibly powerful computers.

The result of bitcoin mining is twofold. First, when computers solve these complex math problems on the bitcoin network, they produce new bitcoin (not unlike when a mining operation extracts gold from the ground). And second, by solving computational math problems, bitcoin miners make the bitcoin payment network trustworthy and secure by verifying its transaction information.

When someone sends bitcoin anywhere, it's called a transaction. Transactions made in-store or online are documented by banks, point-of-sale systems, and physical receipts. Bitcoin miners achieve the same thing by clumping transactions together in blocks and adding them to a public record called the blockchain. Nodes then maintain records of those blocks so that they can be verified into the future.

When bitcoin miners add a new block of transactions to the blockchain, part of their job is to make sure that those transactions are accurate. In particular, bitcoin miners make sure that bitcoin is not being duplicated, a unique quirk of digital currencies called double-spending. With printed currencies, counterfeiting is always an issue. But generally, once you spend $20 at the store, that bill is in the clerks hands. With digital currency, however, it's a different story.

Digital information can be reproduced relatively easily, so with Bitcoin and other digital currencies, there is a risk that a spender can make a copy of their bitcoin and send it to another party while still holding onto the original.

With as many as 300,000 purchases and sales occurring in a single day, verifying each of those transactions can be a lot of work for miners. As compensation for their efforts, miners are awarded bitcoin whenever they add a new block of transactions to the blockchain.

The amount of new bitcoin released with each mined block is called the "block reward." The block reward is halved every 210,000 blocks (or roughly every 4 years). In 2009, it was 50. In 2013, it was 25, in 2018 it was 12.5, and in May of 2020, it was halved to 6.25.

This system will continue until around 2140. At that point, miners will be rewarded with fees for processing transactions that network users will pay. These fees ensure that miners still have the incentive to mine and keep the network going. The idea is that competition for these fees will cause them to remain low after halvings are finished.

These halvings reduce the rate at which new coins are created and, thus, lower the available supply. This can cause some implications for investors, as other assets with low supplylike goldcan have high demand and push prices higher. At this rate of halving, the total number of bitcoin in circulation will reach a limit of 21 million, making the currency entirely finite and potentially more valuable over time.

El Salvador made Bitcoin legal tender on June 9, 2021. It is the first country to do so. The cryptocurrency can be used for any transaction where the business can accept it. The U.S. dollar continues to be El Salvadors primary currency.

In order for bitcoin miners to actually earn bitcoin from verifying transactions, two things have to occur. First, they must verify one megabyte (MB) worth of transactions, which can theoretically be as small as one transaction but are more often several thousand, depending on how much data each transaction stores.

Second, in order to add a block of transactions to the blockchain, miners must solve a complex computational math problem, also called a "proof of work." What they're actually doing is trying to come up with a 64-digit hexadecimal number, called a "hash," that is less than or equal to the target hash. Basically, a miner's computer spits out hashes at different ratesmegahashes per second (MH/s), gigahashes per second (GH/s), or terahashes per second (TH/s)depending on the unit, guessing all possible 64-digit numbers until they arrive at a solution. In other words, it's a gamble.

The difficulty level of the most recent block as of August 2020 is more than 16 trillion. That is, the chance of a computer producing a hash below the target is 1 in 16 trillion. To put that in perspective, you are about 44,500 times more likely to win the Powerball jackpot with a single lottery ticket than you are to pick the correct hash on a single try. Fortunately, mining computer systems spit out many hash possibilities. Nonetheless, mining for bitcoin requires massive amounts of energy and sophisticated computing operations.

The difficulty level is adjusted every 2016 blocks, or roughly every 2 weeks, with the goal of keeping rates of mining constant. That is, the more miners there are competing for a solution, the more difficult the problem will become. The opposite is also true. If computational power is taken off of the network, the difficulty adjusts downward to make mining easier.

Say I tell three friends that I'm thinking of a number between 1 and 100, and I write that number on a piece of paper and seal it in an envelope. My friends don't have to guess the exact number, they just have to be the first person to guess any number that is less than or equal to the number I am thinking of. And there is no limit to how many guesses they get.

Let's say I'm thinking of the number 19. If Friend A guesses 21, they lose because 21>19. If Friend B guesses 16 and Friend C guesses 12, then they've both theoretically arrived at viable answers, because 16<19 and 12<19. There is no 'extra credit' for Friend B, even though B's answer was closer to the target answer of 19.

Now imagine that I pose the 'guess what number I'm thinking of' question, but I'm not asking just three friends, and I'm not thinking of a number between 1 and 100. Rather, I'm asking millions of would-be miners and I'm thinking of a 64-digit hexadecimal number. Now you see that it's going to be extremely hard to guess the right answer.

Because bitcoin mining is essentially guesswork, arriving at the right answer before another miner has almost everything to do with how fast your computer can produce hashes. Just a decade ago, bitcoin mining could be performed competitively on normal desktop computers. Over time, however, miners realized that graphics cards commonly used for video games were more effective and they began to dominate the game. In 2013, bitcoin miners started to use computers designed specifically for mining cryptocurrency as efficiently as possible, called Application-Specific Integrated Circuits (ASIC). These can run from several hundred dollars to tens of thousands but their efficiency in mining Bitcoin is superior.

Today, bitcoin mining is so competitive that it can only be done profitably with the most up-to-date ASICs. When using desktop computers, GPUs, or older models of ASICs, the cost of energy consumption actually exceeds the revenue generated. Even with the newest unit at your disposal, one computer is rarely enough to compete with what miners call "mining pools."

A mining pool is a group of miners who combine their computing power and split the mined bitcoin between participants. A disproportionately large number of blocks are mined by pools rather than by individual miners. Mining pools and companies have represented large percentages of bitcoin's computing power.

Consumers tend to trust printed currencies. Thats because the U.S. dollar is backed by a central bank of the U.S., called the Federal Reserve. In addition to a host of other responsibilities, the Federal Reserve regulates the production of new money, and the federal government prosecutes the use of counterfeit currency.

Even digital payments using the U.S. dollar are backed by a central authority. When you make an online purchase using your debit or credit card, for example, that transaction is processed by a payment processing company (such as Mastercard or Visa). In addition to recording your transaction history, those companies verify that transactions are not fraudulent, which is one reason your debit or credit card may be suspended while traveling.

Bitcoin, on the other hand, is not regulated by a central authority. Instead, bitcoin is backed by millions of computers across the world called nodes. This network of computers performs the same function as the Federal Reserve, Visa, and Mastercard, but with a few key differences. Nodes store information about prior transactions and help to verify their authenticity. Unlike those central authorities, however, bitcoin nodes are spread out across the world and record transaction data in a public list that can be accessed by anyone.

Between 1 in 16 trillion odds, scaling difficulty levels, and the massive network of users verifying transactions, one block of transactions is verified roughly every 10 minutes. But its important to remember that 10 minutes is a goal, not a rule.

The bitcoin network is currently processing just under four transactions per second as of August 2020, with transactions being logged in the blockchain every 10 minutes. For comparison, Visa can process somewhere around 65,000 transactions per second. As the network of bitcoin users continues to grow, however, the number of transactions made in 10 minutes will eventually exceed the number of transactions that can be processed in 10 minutes. At that point, waiting times for transactions will begin and continue to get longer, unless a change is made to the bitcoin protocol.

This issue at the heart of the bitcoin protocol is known as scaling. While bitcoin miners generally agree that something must be done to address scaling, there is less consensus about how to do it. There have been two major solutions proposed to address the scaling problem. Developers have suggested either (1) creating a secondary "off-chain" layer to Bitcoin that would allow for faster transactions that can be verified by the blockchain later, or (2) increasing the number of transactions that each block can store. With less data to verify per block, the Solution 1 would make transactions faster and cheaper for miners. Solution 2 would deal with scaling by allowing for more information to be processed every 10 minutes by increasing block size.

In July 2017, bitcoin miners and mining companies representing roughly 80% to 90% of the networks computing power voted to incorporate a program that would decrease the amount of data needed to verify each block.

The program that miners voted to add to the bitcoin protocol is called a segregated witness, or SegWit. This term is an amalgamation of Segregated, meaning to separate, and Witness, which refers to signatures on a bitcoin transaction. Segregated Witness, then, means to separate transaction signatures from a block and attach them as an extended block. While adding a single program to the bitcoin protocol may not seem like much in the way of a solution, signature data has been estimated to account for up to 65% of the data processed in each block of transactions.

Less than a month later in August 2017, a group of miners and developers initiated a hard fork, leaving the bitcoin network to create a new currency using the same codebase as bitcoin. Although this group agreed with the need for a solution to scaling, they worried that adopting segregated witness technology would not fully address the scaling problem.

Instead, they went with Solution 2. The resulting currency, called bitcoin cash, increased the blocksize to 8 MB in order to accelerate the verification process to allow a performance of around 2 million transactions per day. On August 16, 2020, Bitcoin Cash was valued at about $302 to Bitcoins roughly $11,800.

gold mining equipment

gold mining equipment

911MPE hassmall gold mining equipment for sale andmore specifically mineral processing equipment. Our equipment is best used in small scale extractive metallurgyoperations operated by small miners or hobbyist prospectors and mining fanatics. 911MPE offers gold mining equipment as well as processing equipment applicable to most any base metals: copper, lead, zinc, nickel, tin, tungsten and more. For the relatively small size of equipment offered, sample preparation and metallurgical laboratories can economically buy good alternatives to the usually unaffordable equipment for sale in the classic market place.

911MPE has for target market what mining professionals consider the pilot-plant scale mining operation or artisanal mining operations with a focus around under 500TPD. Metals you can extract include: gold, silver or other of the precious group as well as the classic base metals; copper, lead, zinc, nickel, molybdenum. Much of our ultra-small scale equipment allows you to process from just a few kilo (pounds) per day and work on your passion for a small budget.

You can buy from us mineral processing equipment starting from crushing, grinding, classification, dredging, gravity separation, flotation, pumps, water treatment and smelting. A line of ovens, furnaces and laboratory equipment is also available.

Making a complete list of gold mining equipment starts with defining the type of gold mining you are doing and the budget you have at your disposal. The type of mining relates to hard rock,eluvial, or placer; alluvial deposits. The capital budget you have to invest in buying your equipment with dictate the scale at which you want to mine and influence the long-term operating costs of your mining operation.

Since most of the information online provides lists of gold mining equipment for amateur level mining with equipment like: gold pans, metal detectors, mini sluice box, blue bowl, geologist rock pick, soil scoop, hand screens/classifiers. The items listed just now fall closer to gold prospecting tools and equipment than actual mining.

I will present here what I consider are major equipment lists for 3 types of mining operations. Remember now, a metallurgist is writing. This will not be flawless and since my speciality is process equipment, that is mostly what will be discussed.

Some amateur level gold prospecting equipment such as metal detectors are often classified as mining equipment by small miners/prospectors operating as a hobby. These items include but are not limited to:

alluvial gold mining

alluvial gold mining

Alluvial gold is found beneath the surface at the bottom of a creak or stream. Alluvial gold mining is the process of extracting gold from these creaks, rivers and streams and is generally considered to be the most environmentally friendly method of gold mining as a result of the reduced environmental impact when compared to underground mining. Alluvial gold deposits form over time where a river runs, or has previously run through ground which is rich in gold. The erosive power of the water removes the surrounding rock due to its comparative low density while the heavier gold resists being moved. Alluvial gold usually takes the form of dust, thin flakes or nuggets. The first stage in alluvial gold mining is to take the dredged river bed material and separate the small sand faction (where the gold is found) from the larger mineral fraction. In a typical alluvial mining process physical separation methods such as screening and gravity separation are employed to separate the gold from the mineral fraction.

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mining and mineral processing | the lithosphere | siyavula

mining and mineral processing | the lithosphere | siyavula

Now that we know where the minerals that mankind uses can be found, we can look at how he accesses the minerals. We have seen that often the minerals are not found just lying around waiting to be picked up, but rather are embedded in rocks and combined with other elements.

As man learnt more and made new discoveries, the techniques used to extract the ores improved and the amount of mineral that could be extracted increased greatly. Large tunnels started to be cut into the Earth to access minerals buried deep underground. New processing methods meant new kinds of metals could be mined.

Ancient humans did not worry about whether they could make money from the ores they mined. All they cared about was accessing metals and minerals that would help them eat, keep warm and beat the neighbouring tribes.

In modern times money matters and so the first step in mining is to find a suitably sized deposit of ore. For example, diamonds were found in Kimberley and gold ore was found in Johannesburg. These deposits were large enough to make mining for the gold and diamonds profitable.

As the number and size of known deposits is shrinking, geologists (who study the lithosphere) are developing new ways of finding suitable deposits. Geologists will often spend years learning how to find ores and then spend years exploring for the ores.

Once a suitably sized deposit of a mineral has been found, mining can begin. In ancient times mining and mineral processing were very primitive and the main method used to extract ores was digging by hand.

Mining is largely divided into surface and underground mining. Minerals are often found in river beds, beach sands and other sandy areas. These are known as alluvial deposits. These minerals can be fairly easily removed by surface mining techniques. Other minerals occur in long streaks known as veins or in pipes, and underground mining techniques are used to access these minerals.

Underground mining mainly consists of digging tunnels and shafts into the Earth's crust. Gold is often mined in this way. Underground mining is more risky than surface mining as tunnels can collapse and dangerous gases build up underground.

Flotation involves the use of air bubbles to separate the valuable minerals from the unwanted rock. The valuable mineral becomes attached to the air bubbles and rises to the top of the mixture from where they can be removed.

Gold had long been known in Africa by the indigenous people, but in the late 1800's colonists found gold reefs and started exploiting the resource. Since then it has played a very important role (and often a controversial one too) in South Africa's history and economy. Its discovery brought many foreigners into South Africa, lured by the promises of wealth. They set up small mining villages which later grew into larger settlements, towns and cities. One of the first of these settlements was the beginning of present-day Johannesburg, also known as Egoli or Place of Gold.

Most of South Africa's gold is concentrated in the Golden Arc which stretches from Johannesburg to Welkom. Geologists believe that, millions of years ago, this area was a massive inland lake. Rivers feeding into this lake brought sand, silt, pebbles and fine particles of gold, depositing them over a long period of time. Eventually these deposits accumulated and became compacted to form gold-bearing sedimentary rock or gold reefs. It is because of this complex but unique set of circumstances that South Africa's gold deposits are so concentrated in that area. In other countries like Zimbabwe, gold occurs in smaller pockets which are scattered over a much greater area.

Panning for gold is a manual technique that is used to sort gold from other sediments. Wide, shallow pans are filled with sand and gravel (often from river beds) that may contain gold. Water is added and the pans are shaken so that the gold is sorted from the rock and other materials. Because gold is much more dense, it settles on the bottom of the pan. Pilgrim's Rest in Mpumalanga was the first site for gold panning in South Africa.

This type of mining takes place from the surface of the Earth. In open pit mining, the topsoil is removed first and placed on the side of a trench. Then the surface layers of rock are removed to expose the deeper, valuable mineral layers. The valuable rocks are then blasted into smaller rocks using explosives. The rocks are loaded onto huge trucks and taken away for further crushing and processing. Any mineral that is found close to the surface (even up to \(\text{1000}\) \(\text{m}\)) can be mined using surface mining techniques. If minerals are found deeper, as is the case with most of the gold in South Africa, underground mining is used.

South Africa's thin but extensive gold reefs slope at an angle underneath the ground, and this means that some deposits are very deep and often difficult to reach. Shaft mining is needed to reach the gold ore. After the initial drilling, blasting and equipping of a mine shaft, tunnels are built leading outwards from the main shaft so that the gold reef can be reached. Shaft mining is a dangerous operation, and roof supports are needed so that the rock does not collapse. In addition the intense heat and high pressure below the surface make shaft mining very complex, dangerous and expensive. A diagram illustrating open cast and shaft mining is shown in Figure 14.3.

For every ton of ore that is mined, only a very small amount (about \(\text{5}\) \(\text{g}\)) of gold is extracted. A number of different methods can be used to separate gold from its ore, but one of the more common methods is called gold cyanidation.

In the process of gold cyanidation, the ore is crushed and then cyanide (\(\text{CN}^{-}\)) solution is added so that the gold particles are chemically separated from the ore. In this stage of the process, gold is oxidised. Zinc dust is then added to the cyanide solution. The zinc then takes the place of the gold, so that the gold is precipitated out of the solution. This process is shown in Figure 14.4.

Because gold reflects heat very effectively, it is used in space suits and in vehicles. It is also used in the protective outer coating of artificial satellites. One of the more unusual applications of gold is its use in firefighting, where a thin layer of gold is placed in the masks of the firefighters to protect them from the heat.

In Mapungubwe (in the Limpopo Province) there is evidence of gold mining in South Africa as early as 1200. Today, South Africa is a world leader in the technology of gold mining. The following flow diagram illustrates some of the most important steps in the recovery of gold from its ore.

Refer to chapter 13, types of reactions to calculate oxidation numbers. In the reactants gold has an oxidation number of \(\text{0}\). In the products gold occurs as \(\text{NaAu}(\text{CN})_{2}\). The cyanide ion (\(\text{CN}^{-}\)) has an oxidation number of \(-\text{1}\). The sodium ion (\(\text{Na}^{+}\)) has an oxidation number of \(\text{+1}\). The overall compound must have a total oxidation number of \(\text{0}\). Let gold's oxidation number be \(x\). Then:

So gold has an oxidation number of \(\text{+1}\) in the products. Since this is more positive (greater than) the oxidation number of gold in the reactants gold has lost electrons and so being oxidised.

However, despite the incredible value of gold and its usefulness in a variety of applications, all mining is undertaken at a cost to the environment. The following are just a few of the environmental impacts of gold mining:

If the mining process is not monitored properly, acid and other chemicals from gold processing can leach into nearby water systems such as rivers. This causes damage to animals and plants, as well as to humans who may rely on that water for drinking.

This applies particularly to surface mines (open pit mines), where large amounts of soil and rock must be displaced in order to access the mineral reserves. The shape of the landscape can be changed when large amounts of rocks are dug up from the Earth and stacked on the surface. These are called mine dumps. Open pit mines also create very large holes (pits) in the ground that change the shape of the land.

There is a growing emphasis on the need to rehabilitate old mine sites that are no longer in use. If it is too difficult to restore the site to what it was before, then a new type of land use might be decided for that area. Any mine rehabilitation programme should aim to achieve the following:

There are different ways to achieve these goals. For example plants can be used to remove metals from polluted soils and water, and can also be used to stabilise the soil so that other vegetation can grow. Land contouring can help to restore drainage in the area.

One rehabilitation project that has received a lot of publicity is the rehabilitation of dunes that were mined for titanium by Richards Bay Minerals (RBM). As a group, carry out your own research to try to find out more about this project.

Because of the history preserved at the site, Mapungubwe was declared a National Heritage Site in the 1980's and a World Heritage Site in 2003. The area surrounding it was declared a National Park in 1995. Unfortunately, the site is currently under huge threat from an Australian mining company who have been granted rights to construct an opencast and underground coal mine less than 6 km from the border of the National Park. There is much concern that mining operations will have a negative impact on the ecosystems, flora and fauna around Mapungubwe, and that it will hinder preservation of the site. Several environmental agencies have taken the matter to court in order to prohibit the planned mine and protect the environment around Mapungubwe.

As a class discuss, whether or not the proposed mining should go ahead. Divide into two teams. Assign one team to be in favour of the mining and one team against it. Each team should find facts relevant to their argument and then present it to the other team. At the end of the discussion, draw conclusions about whether or not the mining should take place.

Choose one of the minerals given in the list below and find information on how that mineral is mined. Use the information given in this chapter about gold mining and try to find similar information for the mineral you have chosen. Write up your findings in a report. If possible, split the class into groups and assign a different mineral to each group.

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