Minerals are important to human wealth and welfare: Minerals play an important role in forming rocks and shaping Earth’s surface. When humans began making tools out of iron great progress was made in advancing the world through industries Below is a timeline showing how the value and uses of minerals have changed over time . SOME MINERALS AND THEIR USES: Talc is used in powders and make-up Gypsum is used in drywall or sheetrock Fluorite is used in toothpaste Quartz (found in sand) is used in making glass Topaz is a gemstone Corundum is a gemstone (rubies and sapphires) Diamonds are used in cutting tools and drills Copper is used in electrical wiring, jewelry and coins Halite is used to deice roads, and to season/preserve food Calcite is used in tums to help acid indigestion and in cement ORES AND WHAT THEY ARE MINED FOR: An ore is a mineral that is mined and the useful substances in it are removed and then sold for a profit. Protective shielding against X rays and used in batteries Galena: an ore of lead Graphite: an ore of pencil “lead” and is also a dry lubricant Pyrite: ore of iron, is also known as “fool’s gold” Magnetite: iron ore Hematite: an ore of iron and the red pigment used for color Most automobiles, machine tools, the hulls of large ships, building parts and machine parts are made out of iron. Steel is made by combining IRON with other metals. Stainless steel is used in building parts, cooking pots and pans, cutlery and surgical equipment. It is also used in aircraft and automobiles Sulfur is also an ore: match heads, fireworks, medicine, gunpowder and fertilizer. Sulfur is used to vulcanize rubber. Vulcanization makes rubber tougher. It ensures that rubber maintains its shape. Car tires, shoe soles, water/ air hoses and ice hockey pucks are all made from vulcanized rubber MINERALS AND THEIR SPECIAL PROPERTIES: Calcite: has double refraction and fizzes with HCl Halite: tastes salty Sulfur: has a rotten egg odor Magnetite & hematite: are magnetic Calcite & Fluorite: fluorescence Talc & Graphite: feels greasy Metallic minerals like gold, silver & copper: are easily shaped VIRGINA’S MINERAL Virginia mines a lot of gravel for roads and construction The oldest and largest Kyanite mines are located in VA. Kyanite is a silicate that is blue and is used in the production of ceramics, cookware and jewerly.