Tag Archives: mining
Did you know Missouri is the number one producer of lime in the United States?
Missouri industries produce nearly 2.5 million tons of lime each year at a value of approximately $237 million. This equates to more than 18 percent of U.S. production. Due to the large domestic production, lime is one of a few of more than 60 mineral commodities produced in the U. S. that is not necessary to import. The U.S. actually exports more than 160,000 tons each year.
There are literally thousands of uses for lime that impact our daily lives. Uses range from the manufacture of paper, plastics, rubber, glass, steel and other metals, to treating and cleaning water, wastewater, and air emission in the process of using fossil fuels. It serves a myriad uses in the food industry including the reduction of carbon dioxide produced by stored fruits and vegetables, thereby lengthening their storage time. Used in the production of milk and milk products such as butter, lime is also found in baby food, stomach antacid and tooth paste. Interestingly enough, all quality tortillas and corn chips are treated with lime. So the next time you have a really good tortilla, remember which lime really gave it that special flavor.
Minerals help make the moment!
Did you know that at one time saltpeter mined from several Missouri caves was used to manufacturer fireworks? It is true and the compound barium nitrate (from the mineral barite) is also used in fireworks. Without minerals such as these, the colorful display fireworks afford us each Independence Day would not be possible.
Each color in a fireworks display is produced by a specific mineral compound. For example, deep reds are made with strontium, blues are a product of copper, yellows come from sodium and bright greens require barium. More colors can be created by mixing compounds and some minerals are used for special effects. For example, a loud flash/bang is created by using fine aluminum powder.
The role of minerals in fireworks is just one example of society’s reliance on minerals for the manufacture of everything from automobiles to glass. Learn about minerals in Missouri.
We invite you to visit our Ed Clark Museum of Missouri Geology. to see numerous minerals, rocks and fossils on display. We are open for self-guided tours weekdays from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. We are located at 111 Fairgrounds Road in Rolla, Missouri. Admission is free.
As always, be safe this Fourth of July and adhere to local regulations that are in place for setting off fireworks. –Joe
What is this mineral and why is it so popular?
Since early in the 20th century fuller’s earth has been mined in significant quantities from southeast Missouri. Currently more than 400,000 tons of this clay material is being mined in Missouri each year with an annual value of $30 million. Because this clay mineral is mostly made up of hydrous aluminum silicate it possesses an excellent ability to absorb oil based substances. Centuries ago, wool cloth makers known as “fullers” used this mineral to remove lanolin and other oils from woolen materials. More recently it is used in the treatment of pulmonary fibrosis, and to absorb contamination from military personnel involved in chemical and biological warfare. This mineral’s ability to absorb oils is also why it is used in the cosmetics industry as facial clay treatments to treat acne. However, you may be familiar with one of today’s more common uses of fuller’s earth — cat litter. Read more at this U. S. Geological Survey website about fuller’s earth and other clay production. Also, see our Mineral Resources fact sheet for addtional information about mineral resources in Missouri. –Jerry
Learning about geology, protecting our drinking water, mineral resources, environmental geology, land surveying, dam safety, illegal dumping, and more!
As usual, we had a wonderful time when more than 350 Rolla 5th grade students visited our campus near the end of the school year. Students learned about careers in geology, land surveying and other areas of expertise with the Missouri Department of Natural Resources. We have partnered with the Rolla Middle School for a number of years to help educate Rolla 5th grade students about careers, environmental stewardship and wise use of our natural resources. Check out photos from the day. Thanks to Jeannie Strain at Rolla Middle School for helping coordinate the effort each year and to Shannon Beck (Rolla Daily News reporter) for taking photos and publishing several in the newspaper and online.
We invite you to visit our Ed Clark Museum of Missouri Geology. We are open for self-guided tours weekdays from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. We are located at 111 Fairgrounds Road in Rolla, Missouri. Admission is free. –Joe
Minerals are used in our everyday life
- Plumbing fixtures
- Nails and screws
- Driveway and foundation
- Solder copper pipes and wiring
- Baby powder
- Plant fertilizers
- Carpet contains calcium carbonate and limestone
- Plumbing fixtures contain copper, zinc, nickel, chrome, clay, iron
- Fireplaces contain stone brick, iron
- Nails and screws are made from iron and zinc
- Driveway and foundation contain limestone, clay, shale gypsum, aggregate
- Insulation contains silica, feldspar, vermiculite
- Solder copper pipes and wiring are made from lead or tin
- Toothpaste contains calcium carbonate, limestone, sodium carbonate and fluorine
- Baby powder contains talc
- Plant fertilizers contain potash, phosphate, nitrogen, sulphur
The Missouri Geological Survey determines the availability, quantity and quality of metallic and industrial minerals of the state as well as provides technical assistance and geologic information to those who are developing, marketing, managing or regulating the state’s mineral resources. We also maintain production and value records for minerals and energy commodities produced in the state; compile and maintain databases containing information about drill logs, described sections, mineral prospects, abandoned underground mines, geologic mapping and active mineral producers. Additionally, we maintain a repository of nearly 3,000 drill core containing nearly 3 million feet of core; and conduct programs to improve the public’s understanding of the geologic and mineral resources of the state and to increase the public’s appreciation of geology and mining to our society. Visit our webpage about industrial minerals for additional information.
Stop by our Ed Clark Museum of Missouri Geology to see our collection of minerals, rocks and fossils. We are open weekdays from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. for self-guided tours. We are located at 111 Fairgrounds Road in Rolla, Missouri. Admission is free. –Joe
Calling all Missouri 5th Grade Students!
Fifth-grade students across Missouri are involved in protecting our environment and are sharing their experience with the world by participating in the Missouri Department of Natural Resources’ 2012 Earth Day video and slogan contests. The deadline to enter is Wednesday, Feb. 29, 2012.
Watch last year’s winning video which was created by the Go Green Club, Willard Intermediate School.
Missouri 5th grade teachers are encouraged to register and bring their classes to our 18th annual Earth Day celebration to be held from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. Friday, April 20, 2012, at the Missouri State Capitol south lawn.
The department sponsors and hosts the event at the Capitol each year. Along with our Ask A Geologist booth, the department will host other information booths, games and displays about the environment and the state’s natural resources. Learn about Missouri Geology. Other state and federal agencies also participate. Teachers and students, hope to see you April 20. Register today. –Joe
Silver mining in Missouri
Missouri is ranked eighth in the nation in silver production, according to the U.S. Geological Survey’s most recent statistics (2008). All production came from the Doe Run Company underground mines in southeast Missouri. USGS Minerals information is available online. Also, see our map of Missouri Mineral Resouces. –Joe
Don’t leave home without this book. It rocks!
As you plan road trips this summer, I invite you to consider a copy of Roadside Geology of Missouri. This full-color 288 page book is packed with information about Missouri’s fascinating geology. The state’s geology incorporates glaciated plains, mountains, floodplains, earthquake-formed sand boils, springs, dinosaur fossils, meteorite impact structures, caves, coal, shale, sandstone, limestone, oil, gas and numerous other natural features and resources.
Roadside Geology of Missouri will help you learn about the geology of the state. This book is great to take on vacation in Missouri and they are wonderful when planning your trip. The book is a 6″x9″ paperback loaded with maps, photos, cross-sections, sketches and expert descriptions. Written by Charles G. Spencer and published by Mountain Press Publishing Company in 2011, the book sells for $20 (tax and shipping are extra).
Treat yourself with this new book and the ever popular, Geologic Wonders and Curiosities of Missouri, published by the Missouri Department of Natural Resources’ Division of Geology and Land Survey and you will be ready for a rocking good summer!
Watch this video to learn more about some of the many great things that are available online and onsite.
Last but not least, when in Rolla, don’t miss the Ed Clark Museum of Missouri Geology, where you will find fossils, rocks, minerals, maps, a mastodon tusk and other items on display. Self-guided tours are available weekdays from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. Admission is Free! Additional information may be found on our website. –Joe
We’d love to borrow your old map…
The Division of Geology and Land Survey was awarded a grant from the Office of Surface Mining, U.S. Department of the Interior, to investigate, collect and scan maps of underground coal mines.
To date, we have collected and scanned more than 40 maps at high resolution.
Staff geologists will be advancing the state’s knowledge of past mining activities by collecting and archiving historic underground mine maps from across the state to develop a geospatial web interface to serve mine maps to the public on our website.
This effort will provide a better understanding of underground mining information to support safety and infrastructure development in the state.
If you have a map you are willing to loan us, please contact the principal investigator for this grant, Cheryl Seeger, Ph.D, R.G., by calling 573-368-2100.
See our video on YouTube for additional info. –Joe
Welcome to our blog. For more than 156 years, geologists have served Missourians endeavoring to provide products for professional, technical and educational use. We continue to also provide technical analysis for many geologic investigations and issues in the state, assist citizens in interpretation and understanding of our subsurface resources, and serve as the technical assistance agency for the department. We have served the citizens of Missouri since 1853 and are proud of the expertise of our agency.
A primary responsibility of our agency is to investigate and report on the state’s geological resources. We create geologic maps of bedrock and unconsolidated materials, and develop maps that identify areas susceptible to geologic hazards. This includes areas that are collapse-prone or subject to earthquake damage and landslides.
We ascertain that new water wells are constructed to minimum standards as set by the state regulations to ensure that our groundwater resources are protected from contamination due to poor well construction.
At our McCracken Core Library and Research Center, we have more than 2.5 million feet of drill core samples cataloged and stored for the public to examine. Drill cores are used for the study of the rock layers beneath the surface, to aid in the definition of the physical properties of aquifers, to provide data for waste disposal site studies, to assist in characterizing our mineral resources, and for educational purposes. Examination of rock core in this library saves considerable time and money and often eliminates the need for costly, new drill holes. The McCracken Core Library is one of the largest such collections in the nation and is open to the public, by appointment.
You are also welcome to visit where you will you will find educational displays in our Ed Clark Museum of Missouri Geology. These include rocks, minerals, fossils, and descriptions of the geologic history of Missouri.
However, if you are not able to stop by our Rolla headquarters, please peruse our blog and website to learn more about us and how we may assist you. And perhaps we will meet you on a site where we spend a good deal of time outside the office working with citizens. – Joe Gillman, state geologist and Geology and Land Survey Division director, Missouri Department of Natural Resources