Taxonomy term

usgs

Mineral Resource of the Month: Nickel

People have mined nickel-rich ores for more than 2,300 years. The ores were first used to produce an alloy that ancient Chinese artisans called “pai-t’ung.” This alloy, known today as “white copper,” is typically composed of 70 percent copper, 20 percent nickel and 10 percent zinc. Cupronickel alloys were used in coins as early as 235 B.C. and still are today. However, it was not until 1751 that Axel Fredrik Cronstedt identified nickel as a unique chemical element. 

 
13 Jun 2013

Energy Notes: January 2012-2013

Oil and petroleum imports data are preliminary numbers taken from the American Petroleum Institute’s Monthly Statistical Report. For more information visit www.api.org.

 
19 May 2013

Mineral Resource of the Month: Barite

The mineral barite (barium sulfate), also known as barytes, is most commonly found in hydrothermal veins and as veins in limestone. It is very dense (it has a high specific gravity) and is relatively soft. Those properties make it an excellent weighting agent in drilling muds for petroleum wells. In fact, worldwide, oil and gas drilling account for 85 to 90 percent of barite consumption. In the U.S., about 95 percent of barite is used by petroleum well-drilling markets; the remaining 5 percent in such industrial end uses as barium chemicals (which, for example, a person might drink prior to a medical procedure), filler in paint and plastics, powder coatings, friction products such as brake pads for cars and trucks, and heavy aggregate for radiation shielding. 

 
13 May 2013

Energy Notes: December 2011-2012

Oil and petroleum imports data are preliminary numbers taken from the American Petroleum Institute’s Monthly Statistical Report. For more information visit www.api.org.

 
19 Apr 2013

Mineral Resource of the Month: Diatomite

Diatomite is a soft, friable and very fine-grained siliceous sedimentary rock composed of the remains of fossilized diatoms. Chalky to the touch and often light in color, diatomite can be white if pure, but more commonly it is buff to gray in situ, or sometimes black. Because of its low density and high porosity, it is extremely lightweight, and it is essentially chemically inert. Its properties make diatomite very useful as a filtration medium as well as a component in cement. 

 
13 Apr 2013

Energy Notes: November 2011-2012

Oil and petroleum imports data are preliminary numbers taken from the American Petroleum Institute’s Monthly Statistical Report. For more information visit www.api.org

 
19 Mar 2013

Mineral Resource of the Month: Tellurium

A relatively rare element, tellurium is tied with platinum and palladium as the 71st most abundant element in Earth’s crust. Tellurium belongs to the chalcogen chemical family, along with oxygen, sulfur, selenium and polonium. Oxygen and sulfur are nonmetals, polonium is a metal, and selenium and tellurium are metalloids. However, selenium and tellurium are often referred to as metals when in elemental form, and have semiconducting electrical properties that make them suitable in electronic applications. 

 
13 Mar 2013

Energy Notes: October 2011-2012

Oil and petroleum imports data are preliminary numbers taken from the American Petroleum Institute’s Monthly Statistical Report. For more information visit www.api.org.

 
18 Feb 2013

Mineral Resource of the Month: Beryllium

Beryllium is a lightweight, gray-colored metal. Its physical and mechanical properties — high stiffness-to-weight and strength-to-weight ratios, one of the highest melting points of all light metals, excellent thermal conductivity, outstanding dimensional stability over a wide range of temperatures, reflectivity and transparency to X-rays — make it useful for many applications. 

 
13 Feb 2013

Energy Notes: September 2011-2012

Oil and petroleum imports data are preliminary numbers taken from the American Petroleum Institute’s Monthly Statistical Report. For more information visit www.api.org.

 
18 Jan 2013

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