Q. 244.2( 5 Votes )

What are the different types of iron ore? State the qualities of iron ore found in India.

Answer :

The rocks and minerals from which metallic iron can be economically extracted are called iron ore. This mineral is used to make pig iron which in turn is used to make steel making it the backbone for industrial development in any country. Iron ore is of four different types as outlined below –

a) Magnetite – This is the best quality of iron ore with an up to or more than 70%of iron content. It is magnetic in nature making it a good conductor and highly valuable in the electrical industry.


b) Haematite – The second grade of iron ore has an iron content of 50 – 60% and is a very important source for industrial iron.


c) Limonite – This is an inferior iron ore as the iron content is around 40 -50% but economically viable because it can be accessed through open -cast mining.


d) Siderite – This is an iron carbonate with less than 40% of iron content making it the most inferior type of iron ore. But there are uses for it because of its elf-fluxing nature due to the presence of lime.


India is the 5th largest producer of iron ore in the world. The main qualities of the iron ore deposits found in India have been outlined below:


i) Average metal content of the ores is one of the highest (64%) among the major iron ore producing countries of the world.


Ii) Production is dominated by haematite and magnetite. Mining of inferior quality ores is insignificant.


iii) Mining of iron ores in India is open-cast or surface-mining. Since underground mining is not needed, the cost of mining is low.


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