Ore is a type of rock that contains sufficient minerals with important elements including metals that can be economically extracted from the rock. Ores are extracted from the earth through mining and then they are refined to extract the valuable elements.
Ores are primarily collected for crafting purposes such as for tools and armor. Ore can also be combined to create a block of the materials. Any ore block can be smelted to produce a single unit of raw material. This is the only way to obtain iron and gold ingots.
Various kinds of mineral can be smelted more readily than others; these are commonly referred to as ore minerals. These minerals tend to be concentrated in small, localized rock masses that form as a result of special geologic processes.
Minerals are naturally occurring substances of metals which are present in earth crust while minerals which can used to obtain the metal profitably are called ores. All minerals are not ores while all ores are essentially minerals too. Clay is the mineral of aluminium. Bauxite and Cryolite are the main ores of Aluminium.
Metal is extracted from crushed ore in two ways: electrolysis and smelting. Smelting uses heat to separate the valuable metal form the rest of the ore. Smelting process requires a reduction agent or another chemical to separate metal from its ore. Carbon is one of the reduction agents in the form of the charcoal.
On the other hand, Electrolysis separates metal from ore by using acid and electricity. Aluminum is burns at a very high temperature extracted from Bauxite by electrolysis.
Generally, earth contains only a finite amount of ore. Ore Genesis is the process by which a deposit of ore is created after taking million of years. There are three types of ore genesis and these are as follows:
Internal Process: Ore can accumulate through geologic activity, means volcanoes bring ore from deep in the earth to the surface. This is called an internal process.
Hydrothermal Process: Ore can accumulate when seawater circulates through cracks in the earth’s crust and deposit minerals in the areas around hydrothermal vents. This is called a hydrothermal process.
Surficial Process: Ore can accumulate through processes that take place on the surface of earth like erosion. This is called surficial process.