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Mineral Resources India – Iron, Coal, Aluminium, Copper

Lead, Zinc /mineral-resources-india-iron-coal-aluminium-copper-lead-zinc/

Metallic Ferrous Containing iron contents (Iron ores, Ni, Co, Mn etc.)

Non Ferrous Gold, Silver, Cu, Pb, Al, Zn etc.

Non Metallic Organic Fossil fuels → Coal, Petroleum etc.

Inorganic Mica, Limestone, Graphite, Gypsom etc.

Iron & Coal Industries

Iron Ores

Magnetite → Best quality iron ore containing 72 % iron (Have magnetic properties)
Hematite → 60 – 70 % iron content
Limonite → 40 – 60 % iron content

manganese etc. Siderite → ~ 40 % iron content Iron-coal industry Iron ore + coke + limestone + heat → Pig iron Pig iron ore processing → cast-iron. steel and variety of alloys Therefore. Essential inputs are: iron ore. wrought iron. coking coal and limestone water for cooling energy for heating Steel industry also requires dolomite. but in small quantities Hence their presence is not the main deciding factor for the location Deciding locations for iron-coal industry 2/8 .

No trains to move coal) To produce five tons of iron. you needed 8-12 tons of coal Railway engines were also inefficient So. to process 1 tons of iron ore. Near Forest Near Coal mines Near Coastal Areas Near Forest Until the end of medieval period. Ratnagiri. it was cheaper to transport iron ore to coalfields rather than transporting coal to iron ore site Near coastal areas By early 20th century the coal and iron ore mines in US-Europe started getting depleted So. wood supply was primary factor for deciding location Hence. due to following reasons - The coalfield region had a tradition of iron working based on charcoal As a result coalfield areas already had the labour and technology In Britain. you had to chop down one acre of forest to get sufficient charcoal Therefore. smelters were usually setup near forest areas Even in Modern times. iron production was done on small scale Energy was immobile (No wires to move electricity. iron and steel industry were setup near coalmines. Visvesvaraya Iron and Steel Plant (Karnataka) was setup near jungle to get wood- charcoal Later it was switched to hydro-electricity from Sarawati river Near coal fields During the Industrial Revolution. weight-wise. they started importing iron ore from other countries As a result the iron space and steel industry started moving toward coastal sites to reduce cost of transporting ores from port to factory via railways Example → Steel plants at Vishakhapatnam. iron ore was found embedded with coal seams → same area provided both iron ore + coal During that era. Mangalore 3/8 .

washed and mixed with caustic soda to remove impurities 4/8 . compared to cheap varieties of coal like Lignite Therefore you’ve to mix the coking coal with iron ore For heating you can use other variety of coal / even electricity Steel Industries India Jharkhand → Jamshedpur (TISCO). you require significant concentration of bauxite ore at one particular site Bauxite occurs frequently in the tropical areas where limestone rocks are exposed to weathering First. Bokaro West Bengal → Durgapur. Burnpur Odisha → Rourkela Chhattisgarh → Bhilai Andhra Pradesh → Vishakhapatnam Karnataka → Vishveshwarya Tamil Nadu → Salem Aluminium-Bauxite Refining Bauxite to Alumina Aluminum is an abundant mineral in the earth crust But for mining or commercial scale exploitation.Need for “Coking coal” Iron ore has iron oxide but we’re only interested in iron So. we’ve to get rid of the “oxide” part Hence to remove the “oxide” part we blend it with carbon to form “Carbon dioxide” Coking coal has high concentration of carbon. Bauxite ore is crushed.

this process (of converting bauxite to Alumina) is done near the raw material side Because less weight → less transportation cost Alumina to aluminum (By Electrolysis) The white powder of alumina is dissolved in a bath → Electric current is passed through it using carbon electrodes → alumina is converted to aluminum Requires massive amount of electricity Hence. ~50% or more weight loss happens Hence. TN Copper Refining India 5/8 . Odisha MALCO → Mettur. Jharsuguda (Vedanta) Chhattisgarh → Korba (Vedanta) BALCO → Ratnagiri. aluminum smelting facilities are set up near sources of cheap electricity. Maharashtra NALCO → Koratpur. rather than near to raw material or near to final market Aluminium Industry → India UP → Hindalco (Birla) Odisha → Hirakund (Birla). Then it is dried in large furnaces to remove moisture content → You get alumina During this phase.

electricity is passed and impurities are removed Here. therefore. Rajasthan BACLO → Korba. but smelting process is different Concentrating ore (Copper ore → Blister copper) Copper ore is soaked in water and mixed with oils The copper revering matter floats on the top.5% of the original matter remains Less weight → less transportation cost. and is separated out for further processing After this “concentrating” stage. copper became important for electric industry As the demand for copper increased. copper concentrating mills are set up near the raw material (mines) After this stage. the weight loss ratio is extremely small. barely 2. With 20th century. there is no economic factor to setup copper refining factories near the raw material Copper Refineries → India Hindustan Copper → Khetri. sulfur and oxygen impurities are separated from the concentrated copper ore & we get “blister copper” Even in the state. Jhunjnu district. Chhattisgarh 6/8 . blister copper is refined via electrolysis method Blister copper is immersed in a bath of copper sulphate. new mining-smelting technologies developed to utilize even lower quality ores Location principle for copper and aluminum industries same. the weight loss ratio is significant. Because it contains impurities of gold. therefore smelting is usually done near raw material Blister to copper (Electrolysis) Although Blister copper is 99% pure metal. but still unsuitable for manufacturing electronic wires. lead and zinc Therefore. (~1%) So. utensils etc. silver.

g. better import rock phosphate here Hence. Lonavala. scrap based copper smelter are not yet well established in India Very few plants using scrap metal to recycle copper (e. Indian copper ore is average quality.g. because we don’t have technology to produce them locally for e. There is huge gap between demand and supply. Beryllium copper Mining & smelting technology is obsolete → Causes substantial air pollution because of sulphur dioxide emission Still don’t have technology for downstream copper products e. There is no smelter at Malanjkhand (MP) hence the concentrate has to be transported to Khetri (Rajasthan) → cost of production increases Overall. copper refining companies have integrated plants to produce such acids within their premises Copper Industry Challenges in India Special copper alloys are still imported. majority of them still imported. by products can be used for making phosphoric acid. Hindalco (Birla) → Dahej. Producing 1 ton Copper from ore takes almost 14000 kwh energy. Hyderabad) Manpower requirement per tonne of finished copper is very high compared to developed countries due to less automation. Nickel etc from copper concentration. almost 70% copper is imported. so. sulphuric acid Copper smelting → SO2gas → Used in making Sulphuric Acid Sulphuric acid + Rock Phosphate → Phosphoric Acid which can further it can be used for making fertilizers Rock Phosphate is usually imported. copper tubes for refrigeration/AC etc. Still don’t have technology for complete recovery of precious metals such as Cobalt.g. such acid industries are located in the vicinity of Copper refineries Nowadays. Bharuch district of Gujarat Sterlite Industries → Tutikorin. However. Tamil Nadu Acid Industry From the Copper refining process. hence mining/refining is a costly because copper yield is low Lead and Zinc Industry Lead and Zinc 7/8 . because SO 2gas is difficult to transport. but producing 1 ton copper from scrap/recycling takes only 1700 kwh.

Ore → concentrate (Smelting) → Refining (Electrolysis) Runs on the principle that certain minerals have an affinity for certain oils Hence the ore is mixed with water. foam (containing mineral particles) is skimmed off Location Factors Concentration stage involves significant weight loss → carried out near mining site. based on imported lead concentrates Rajasthan Zinc At Debari → Ore comes from Rajpur-Dariba mines + via. so majority of requirement met via imports. Refining stage require lot of electricity → done near large thermal plants /hydroelectric sites. import At Chanderia → Ore comes from Bhilwara Kerala Zinc Based on imported zinc concentrates 8/8 . State Ore Smelter Jharkhand Lead At Tundoo Andhra Pradesh Lead Vishakhapatnam. oil and chemicals The mineral particles get attach with oil bubbles and float on the surface. India doesn’t have sufficient ores of Lead/Zinc.