Practically everything we do or use in our daily lives depends on materials we take from the ground. The history of our exploration of the world has often centered on obtaining strategic mineral resources. For example, the lust for gold funded much of the exploration and conquest of the Americas by Europeans. Look around you now and see all the things that are made out of rocks and minerals. The paper of this book, though mostly plant fiber, has probably been created using kaolin, sulfur, and barium (from barite). Metals, extracted from ores have given us all kinds of objects including cans, cars, coins, building materials, and alloys such as pewter, bronze, brass, and stainless steel. Plastic, which we use more of than steel, aluminum, and copper combined, is made from petroleum, the mineral remains of ancient plankton. Explore the amazing facts and observe the beautiful patterns nature has created right beneath our feet. ROCKS & MINERALS provides a fascinating, full-color tour of rare gems and (not so) common rocks, perfect for experienced rock lovers and those just dipping their toes into geology.
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