Ask The Experts—Columbium/Niobium
September 2008 by StaffA: Niobium is a rare and strategically important metallic element used in a number of specialized high tech applications. The pure metal is a shiny grey color, but it takes on a bluish tinge...
What are these rocks?
Q: What classes should one take if planning on majoring in mining engineering or geology?
“Metal detecting is not a social function.” So said a good friend of mine. And it’s true. But that’s not to say the benefits of having a prospecting partner don’t outweigh those of being alone.
The accurate sampling of mineral deposits for testing and analysis is perhaps the most important step involved in both mineral exploration and development. It is a critical factor in initial prospecting efforts and the preliminary investigation of grassroots exploration projects, yet sampling is often performed in a haphazard and incomplete fashion during the early stages of prospecting and exploration activities.
We have to remember that the earliest miners were not geologists, but came from a variety of backgrounds. Their survival depended on finding enough gold so they worked hard and adapted to whatever challenges these new areas presented.
Thomas Tierney has been a long-time subscriber to ICMJ’s Prospecting and Mining Journal and has read about the many battles between miners and overzealous regulators. Then he faced his own battle.
The Maine Geological Survey is raising money to acquire a cluster of world-famous mines and create the state’s first public mineral park for rockhounds, science teachers and others with an interest in rocks and minerals.
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