Mining Essay

1177 WordsSep 4, 20125 Pages
There are many materials on this earth that have to be mined in order to retrieve them, and there are different mining techniques and methods for each individual material. There are specific methods for mining for gold such as quartz mining and placer mining, methods for coal mining like underground mining and surface mining, and methods for diamond mining, such as open pit and underground mining, coastal and inland alluvial mining, and marine mining. There are some methods that are better for the environment than others. But no matter what technique is used, they all result in the retrieval of a precious material that is needed somewhere in the world. Gold Mining There are many different techniques used in gold mining. There are different techniques for different types of mines. Quartz mines are mines in which gold is found encased in rocks. Placer mines are commonly used in California, placer mines extract gold that is imbedded inside of sand, gravel, and clay by mixing soil together with water in a metal pan. The water washes away the lighter soil and leaves the gold which is much heavier. In the article California Notes, by Charles Turrill, placer mines are classified by topographical position as well as the methods used in working them. The topographical classifications are hill claims, in which “pay dirt” (soil that contains gold) is found in or under a hill, Flat claims, in which “pay dirt” is found on flats or flat ground, Bench claims in which “pay dirt” is found on hill sides above a river, Gulch claims which “pay dirt” is found along the bed of a stream going through a canyon, that is without water for part of the year. Bar claims are claims in which gold is found in sand or gravel in rivers with low water. River bed claims are claims in which gold is found by turning rivers from their natural course. Ancient

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