Class 12 Chemistry Isolation of Elements Understanding the Terms Minerals & Ores

Understanding the Terms Minerals & Ores

  • Mineral word is derived from the word ‘Mine’.
  • The naturally occurring substances in the form of which the metals occur in the earth crust are called minerals.
  • Every mineral is not suitable for the extraction of the metal.
  • The mineral from which the metal is economically and conveniently extracted is called an ore.
  • Thus, all ores are minerals but all minerals are not ores.
  • Impurities associated with ores are called gangue or matrix.


  • The extraction and isolation of metals from ores involve the following major steps:
    • Concentration of the ore,
    • Isolation of the metal from its concentrated ore, and
    • Purification of the metal.
  • The entire scientific and technological process used for isolation of the metal from its ores is known as Metallurgy.


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