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Aluminium Production
There are different kinds of mining processes followed in the mining industry. The most common mining techniques deployed over the world fall under surface mining. These are as follows:
  • Open-pit mining: Recovery of material from an open pit in the ground, quarrying or gathering building materials from an open pit mine
  • Strip mining: The surface is stripped off to reveal layers of ore underneath
  • Mountaintop removal: This technique is commonly associated with coal mining and involves blowing the top of a mountain top off to reach ore deposits at a depth
Apart from surface mining, the other mining processes are:
  • Drift mining: This technique utilizes horizontal access tunnels.
  • Slope mining: This process involves the usage of diagonally sloping access shafts
  • Shaft mining: This consists of vertical access shafts
Bauxite is mined through the surface mining technique. Deposits of bauxite are located by geologists through a process known as prospecting; this process involves sourcing core samples or drilling the soil which might contain bauxite ore. Analysis of the core samples help in determining the quantity and quality of the bauxite.

Following the discovery of the ore, bauxite is sourced from open-pit mines and is subsequently converted to aluminium through various processes. Bauxite mining involves the following steps:
  • Bulldozers clear land above a bauxite deposit.
  • The ore is brought to the surface with explosives.
  • The soil containing bauxite is taken to the processing plants in trucks.
Bauxite ore is mined primarily in Australia, Africa, South America and the Caribbean.
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