Mineral is defined as a “homogenous, naturally occurring substance with a definable internal structure.” Minerals are found in varied forms in nature, ranging from the hardest diamond to the softest talc. Rocks are combinations of homogeneous substances called minerals.Minerals are also classified into energy resources. There are various sources of energy such as coal, petroleum, natural gas, etc., which are non-renewable resources, and other sources of energy are solar energy, wind energy, etc.
Minerals are usually found in “ores”. The term ore is used to describe an accumulation of any mineral mixed with other elements.
Minerals generally occur in the following forms:
Ferrous minerals account for about three-fourths of the total value of the production of metallic minerals.
It is mainly used in the manufacturing of steel and ferro-manganese alloy.
Energy resources can be classified as
Conventional Sources: It includes firewood, cattle dung cake, coal, petroleum, natural gas and electricity.
Non-Conventional Sources: It includes solar, wind, tidal, geothermal, biogas and atomic energy
Let us discuss each of them in detail.
It is the most abundantly available fossil fuel.
It is used for power generation, to supply energy to the industry as well as for domestic needs.
Lignite is a low grade brown coal, which is soft with high moisture content.
Coal that has been buried deep and subjected to increased temperatures is bituminous coal.
Anthracite is the highest quality of hard coal.
Jharia, Raniganj, Bokaro are important coalfields.
It provides fuel for heat and lighting, lubricants for machinery and raw materials for a number of manufacturing industries.
Petroleum refineries act as a “nodal industry” for synthetic textile, fertiliser and numerous chemical industries.
Mumbai High, Gujarat and Assam are major petroleum production areas in India.
Natural gas is an important clean energy resource. It is considered an environment-friendly fuel.
The power and fertilizer industries are the key users of natural gas.
Compressed Natural Gas (CNG ) is used in vehicles to replace liquid fuels.
Large reserves of natural gas have been discovered in the Krishna-Godavari basin
Electricity is generated mainly in 2 ways:
By running water which drives hydro turbines to generate Hydro Electricity. It is a renewable resource of energy. India has a number of multi-purpose projects like the Bhakra Nangal, Damodar Valley Corporation, the Kopili Hydel Project.
By burning other fuels such as coal, petroleum and natural gas to drive turbines to produce Thermal Power. It uses non-renewable fossil fuels for generating electricity.
Non-Conventional Sources of Energy
The renewable energy sources like solar energy, wind, tide, biomass and energy from waste material are called Non-Conventional Energy Sources. Let’s discuss them one by one.
Nuclear Energy is obtained by altering the structure of atoms. Uranium and Thorium are used for generating atomic or nuclear power.
Solar energy is produced by the Sun’s light. Photovoltaic technology converts sunlight directly into electricity.
Wind Energy or Power is the use of wind to generate electricity. Wind turbines are used for this purpose. The largest wind farm cluster is located in Tamil Nadu from Nagarcoil to Madurai.
Biogas is a type of biofuel that is naturally produced from the decomposition of organic waste. Biogas is the most efficient use of cattle dung. It improves the quality of manure.
Tidal energy is the form of hydropower that converts the energy obtained from tides into useful forms of power, mainly electricity. In India, the Gulf of Khambhat, the Gulf of Kachchh in Gujarat on the western coast and Gangetic delta in Sunderban regions of West Bengal provide ideal conditions for utilising tidal energy.
When heat and electricity are produced by using the heat from the interior of the earth, it is known as Geo-Thermal Energy. In India, geothermal energy is harnessed from Parvati valley near Manikarn in Himachal Pradesh and from Puga Valley, Ladakh.
Every sector of the national economy – agriculture, industry, transport, commercial and domestic – needs inputs of energy. There is an urgent need to develop a sustainable path for energy development. Here are some ways that each one of us can contribute to save energy resources:
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Question 1 What are the advantages of ‘mineral resources’?
Ans. Minerals are non–renewable natural resources that are vital for the construction, manufacturing and energy industries.
Question 2 What are the major minerals found in India?
Ans. India’s major mineral resources include Coal, Iron ore, Manganese ore , Mica and Bauxite.
Question 3 What are the uses of ‘Tidal energy’?
Ans. 1. Consistency 2. Long term economy 3. Intermittence 4. Startup costs 5. Permanence
Question 4 What are the 4 main types of mineral resources?
Ans. Mineral resources can be divided into two major categories – Metallic and Nonmetallic. Metallic resources are things like Gold, Silver, Tin, Copper, Lead, Zinc, Iron, Nickel, Chromium, and Aluminum. Nonmetallic resources are things like sand, gravel, gypsum, halite, Uranium, dimension stone.
Question 5 What are 10 uses of minerals?
Ans. Uses of Metallic Minerals
Question 6 How do we use minerals?
Ans. While minerals are frequently used to create the materials used in the construction of roads and buildings, they also serve as critical components in the manufacturing of high-tech electronics, next-generation vehicles and other everyday devices.
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