Mineralogy

1983 Edition

Gangue minerals

  • E. E. Fairbanks
Reference work entry
DOI: https://doi.org/10.1007/0-387-30720-6_49
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Ore, as mined, contains ore minerals, gangue minerals, and country rock. A mass of mineral matter is not considered ore unless one or more of its ore minerals can be recovered on a profitable basis. As originally used, ore minerals were metal bearing (see  Metallic Minerals). More recently, nonmetallic minerals of commercial importance are considered ore minerals (see  Mineral Industries).

The name, ore, appears to have been derived from the Middle English, oor, but its similarity to earlier names for copper ore and brass suggest a deviation. Gangue is from the Greek, gang, meaning “vein of metal,” the form gangue being of French derivation.

As generally used, gangue minerals have no commercial importance in a particular period of time, possibly becoming ore minerals at a later date. They are commonly silicates, carbonates, or fluorides, more rarely sulfides. The gangue minerals of ore deposits formed at high temperatures differ from those deposited at lower temperatures. The principal...
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© Hutchinson Ross Publishing Company 1981

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  • E. E. Fairbanks

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