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The USGS Mineral Resources Program delivers unbiased science and information to understand mineral resource potential, production, consumption, and how minerals interact with the environment.

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Mineral Statistics and Commodity Information

Mineral Statistics and Commodity Information

Statistics and information on minerals and materials essential to the U.S. economy, the national security, and protection of the environment published by the National Minerals Information Center.

Minerals Information

Mineral Resources Online Spatial Data

Mineral Resources Online Spatial Data

Interactive maps and downloadable data for regional and global geology, geochemistry, geophysics, and mineral resources.

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Science Priorities

We study geologic processes that concentrate known mineral resources at specific localities in the Earth's crust, and assess quantities, qualities, and areas of undiscovered mineral resources, or potential future supply.

Minerals Information and Material Flow

Characterization and Identification of Critical Mineral Resources

Geologic and Mineral Resource Studies in Alaska

Characterization of the Midcontinent Region Mineral Resources

Assessment of Undiscovered Mineral Resources

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News

Date published: May 22, 2018

Digital Gold Rush Depends on Traditional Gold

In 1849, the discovery of gold in California sparked one of the most famous gold rushes in history. Thousands trekked across mountainous terrain to seek the precious metal, with entire industries springing up around the rush. In fact, the desire to understand our mineral resource wealth that led to the creation of the U.S. Geological Survey was in part fueled by gold rushes like this one.

Date published: May 18, 2018

Interior Releases 2018’s Final List of 35 Minerals Deemed Critical to U.S. National Security and the Economy

The Department of the Interior today published a list of 35 mineral commodities considered critical to the economic and national security of the United States. This list will be the initial focus of a multi-agency strategy due in August this year to implement President Donald J. Trump's Executive Order to break America's dependence on foreign minerals

Date published: April 5, 2018

USGS Scientists Develop New Tool to Determine if Vermiculite Insulation Contains Asbestos

U.S. Geological Survey scientists and partners have created an onsite, time-saving technique for building inspectors to ascertain whether vermiculite insulation contains amphibole asbestos. The findings are featured in the April 2 edition of American Mineralogist.

The USGS Mineral Resources Program supports data collection and research on nonfuel mineral resources. We study geologic processes that form known mineral resources at specific areas in the Earth's crust and assess potential future supply of mineral resources.

Our Science Activities
Filter Total Items: 43
Date published: July 31, 2018
Status: Active

Emerging Geoenvironmental Issues Related to Proposed Mining in the Lake Superior Region

We are studying environmental issues related to mining, and potential mining, in the Great Lakes region, continuing the study of characterizing baseline geochemistry of several watersheds in Minnesota and Michigan, examining the potential for aquatic toxicity from metals, and examining the acid-neutralizing and acid-generating potentials of mine waste, and the environmental, and possible human...

Date published: June 29, 2018
Status: Active

Sources, Forms, Extractability of Metals in Non-Ore Deposit Sources

This project will explore potential recovery and environmental consequences of metals in mining and mineral processing wastes as a function of ore deposit geology, and in debris from demolished or burned buildings. 

Date published: June 29, 2018
Status: Active

Trace Metal Mobility in the Yellow Pine Mining District, Idaho

The study objective is to conduct an integrated, interdisciplinary study on source areas, biogeochemical transformations, and physical and biological pathways for trace metal transport in a tributary of the Snake River watershed, focusing on the Sugar Creek watershed. The historical Cinnabar mercury mine site is at the headwaters of Cinnabar Creek, a tributary to Sugar Creek. This integrated...

Date published: June 29, 2018
Status: Active

Geochemical Signatures and Environmental Impacts of Ore and Trace Mineralization in the Southern Midcontinent

The overall project objective is a comprehensive analysis of the natural and anthropogenic consequences of extensive ore and trace mineralization in the southern midcontinent of the U.S. This will be conducted at two scales: 1) landscape and 2) process-level.

1) Landscape scale using geospatial and machine learning techniques to combine multiple geochemical and geologic data sets and...

Date published: June 18, 2018
Status: Active

Alaska Resource Data File

The Alaska Resource Data File (ARDF) site provides descriptions of mines, prospects, and mineral occurrences for individual U.S. Geological Survey 1:250,000-scale quadrangles in Alaska.

Date published: June 11, 2018
Status: Active

Alaska Databases and Information Analysis

We provide GIS and database support for Alaska-based research projects, including database design, data capture, and maintenance, GIS analysis and display, and production of datasets and metadata for publication and data releases.

Contacts: Nora B Shew
Date published: May 25, 2018
Status: Active

Tellurium in Igneous-related Epithermal Precious Metal Deposits in Colorado and New Mexico

The project aims to improve our understanding of the causes of tellurium enrichment in epithermal precious metal deposits, and strengthen our ability to assess the Nation's tellurium deposits. Tellurium is used in solar panel technologies and is considered a critical mineral. Epithermal deposits of this type represent a prospective future source of tellurium.

Date published: May 25, 2018
Status: Active

Mineral Commodity Fact Sheets

The Mineral Resources Program publishes fact sheets on selected important commodities. These fact sheets teach about commodities and the important role each one plays in the national economy, national security, and lives of Americans every day.

Date published: May 24, 2018
Status: Active

Databases and Information Analysis

Our objectives are to: 1) collect and assimilate digital geospatial data in a standardized format for minerals-related research and assessments, 2) develop and improve analytical procedures for using geospatial data in minerals products, 3) provide support for timely, quality, and reproducible mineral assessments, 4) provide easy access to the data, and 5) report results of our work in a...

Date published: May 24, 2018
Status: Active

Data Information Management and Technology - Eastern Minerals

The Data Information Management and Technology project provides geographic information systems (GIS) management and technical support to projects of the Eastern Minerals and Environmental Resources Science Center (EMERSC). The project facilitates geospatial data development, compiling, documentation, visualization, analyses, modeling, and product requirements using the GIS framework.

...

Date published: May 24, 2018
Status: Active

GIS and Information Management - Central Minerals

We support the geospatial component of Mineral Resources Program research and provide public access to research results and geospatial information. We facilitate all aspects of the data life cycle, including the publication and archiving of geospatial information and products. We also develop and steward national-scale data layers considered foundational to the Mineral Resources Program as...

Date published: May 23, 2018
Status: Active

Data Management and Information Analysis - Crustal

We provide geographic information system (GIS) support and analysis, manage geospatial data collections including documentation and distribution for several dataset types (geophysical, remote sensing, geochemical). We update currently unpublished geophysical survey data to a standardized, open-data format, document, and release the data to the public. We investigate methods development, mobile...

Our Mineral Resources On-Line Spatial Data web portal is our primary resource for interactive maps and downloadable data for regional and global geology, geochemistry, geophysics, and mineral resources.

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Filter Total Items: 21
Date published: July 30, 2018

Cobalt Deposits in the United States

This data release provides descriptions of more than 60 mineral regions, mines, and mineral deposits within the United States and its territories that are reported to contain enrichments of cobalt (Co). To focus the scope of this data release, we report only mined deposits and exploration prospects with past production, or resource and reserve estimates of 1,000 metric tons or more of cobalt...

Date published: July 29, 2018

Cobalt Deposits in the United States

This data release provides descriptions of more than 60 mineral regions, mines, and mineral deposits within the United States and its territories that are reported to contain enrichments of cobalt (Co). To focus the scope of this data release, we report only mined deposits and exploration prospects with past production, or resource and reserve estimates of 1,000 metric tons or more of cobalt...

Date published: June 4, 2018

Tin Deposits in the United States

This data release provides descriptions of more than 120 mineral regions, mines, and mineral deposits within the United States that are reported to contain enrichments of tin (Sn).

Date published: March 26, 2018

Rhenium Occurrences in the United States

This data release provides descriptions of more than 100 mining districts, mines, and mineral occurrences (deposits and prospects) within the United States that are reported to contain enrichments of rhenium (Re). These mineral occurrences include mined deposits, exploration prospects, and other occurrences with notable concentrations of rhenium. 

Date published: March 7, 2018

Database of significant deposits of gold, silver, copper, lead, and zinc in Alaska

This data release provides descriptions and locations of 134 significant deposits in Alaska. Approximately 99 percent of past production and remaining identified resources of gold, silver, copper, lead, and zinc in the United States are accounted for by deposits that originally contained at least 2 metric tons (t) of gold, 85 t silver, 50,000 t copper, 30,000 t lead, and 50,000 t zinc.

Date published: February 22, 2018

Rare Earth Element Occurrences in the United States

This data release provides descriptions of more than 200 mineral districts, mines, and mineral occurrences (deposits, prospects, and showings) within the United States that are reported to contain substantial enrichments of the rare earth elements (REEs). These mineral occurrences include mined deposits, exploration prospects, and other occurrences with notable concentrations of the REEs.

Date published: February 2, 2018

Mines, Mineral Occurrences, and Mining Districts in the Carlin Area, Nevada

The point and polygon layers within this database represent locations of mines, mineral occurrences (which includes deposits and prospects), and mining districts in an approximately 200-square mile area northwest of Carlin, Nevada. Tables contain additional information such as commodity, geology, deposit types, activity status, deposit resources, and mine production. 

Date published: December 19, 2017

Global Distribution of Selected Mines, Deposits, and Districts of Critical Minerals

The point and polygon layers within this geodatabase present the global distribution of selected mineral resource features (deposits, mines, districts, mineral regions) for 22 minerals or mineral commodities considered critical to the economy and security of the United States as of 2017 (Sb, Ba, Be, CO, F, Ga, Ge, C, Hf, In, Li, Mn, Nb, PGE, REE, Re, Se, Ta, Te, Sn, Ti, V, Zr).

Date published: December 1, 2017

Prospect- and Mine-Related Features from U.S. Geological Survey 7.5- and 15-Minute Topographic Quadrangle Maps of the United States

These data are part of a larger USGS project to develop an updated geospatial database of mines, mineral deposits and mineral regions in the United States. Mine and prospect-related symbols, such as those used to represent prospect pits, mines, adits, dumps, tailings, etc., are currently being digitized on a state-by-state basis from USGS Historical Topographic Maps.

Date published: April 10, 2017

Interactive USGS Spectral Library Version 7

Interactive website allowing users to search the contents of the USGS Spectral Library Version 7 data.

Date published: April 10, 2017

USGS Spectral Library Version 7 Data

Researchers at the USGS Spectroscopy Laboratory have measured the spectral reflectance of thousands of materials in the lab and compiled them in the USGS Spectral Library.  Detailed sample descriptions are provided with the spectra, including the results of X-ray Diffraction, Electron Probe Micro-Analysis, and other analytical methods.

Date published: April 10, 2017

USGS Digital Spectral Library

References for material identification in remote sensing images. The library contains spectral reflectance data for of hundreds of materials, including minerals, vegetation, organic and volatile compounds, and man-made materials.

Filter Total Items: 9
Date published: March 22, 2018

Surface Materials Map of Afghanistan: Iron-bearing Minerals and Other Materials

This map shows the distribution of selected iron-bearing minerals and other materials derived from analysis of HyMap imaging spectrometer data of Afghanistan. 

Date published: March 22, 2018

Surface Materials Map of Afghanistan: Carbonates, Phyllosilicates, Sulfates, Altered Minerals, and Other Materials

This map shows the distribution of selected carbonates, phyllosilicates, sulfates, altered minerals, and other materials derived from analysis of HyMap imaging spectrometer data of Afghanistan.  

Date published: January 25, 2018

Mineral Deposits of the Midcontinent Rift System

USGS interactive Story Map describing the Mineral Deposits of the Midcontinent Rift System.

Date published: April 1, 2016

Geochemical and Mineralogical Maps for Soil for the Conterminous U.S.

Online data set provides an estimate of the abundance and spatial distribution of chemical elements and minerals in soils of the conterminous United States and represents a baseline for soil geochemistry and mineralogy against which future changes may be recognized and quantified.

Date published: March 7, 2016

Geologic Map Data

Digital geologic maps of the U.S. States with consistent lithology, age, GIS database structure, and format.

Date published: March 7, 2016

Mining Operation and Prospecting

Mine plants and operations for commodities monitored by the National Minerals Information Center of the USGS. Operations included are those considered active in 2003 and surveyed by the USGS.

Date published: March 7, 2016

Minerals Information Maps

Maps of facilities for both international and domestic locations.

Date published: November 2, 2015

National Map of Surficial Mineralogy

The large-area material maps presented here were designed to aid in the identification of mineral groups in exposed rocks, soils, mine waste rock, and mill tailings on the Earth’s surface. Many man-made materials have spectral absorption features that can appear similar to those of various mineral groups at the spectral and spatial resolutions of Landsat and ASTER satellite data. View usage guide.

Date published: December 1, 2013

Hyperspectral Surface Materials Maps of Afghanistan 1:250,000-scale Quadrangle Series

1:250,000-scale quadrangle maps covering Afghanistan showing the distribution of iron-bearing minerals, selected carbonates, phyllosilicates, sulfates, altered minerals, and other materials derived from analysis of HyMap imaging spectrometer data.

Filter Total Items: 2,132
Year Published: 2018

Framework geologic map and structure sections along the Bartlett Springs Fault Zone and adjacent area from Round Valley to Wilbur Springs, northern Coast Ranges, California

The geologic map and accompanying report describes the extent, complexity, architecture, and evolution of the Bartlett Springs Fault Zone between Clear Lake and Round Valley, California. This fault zone is the eastern-most known active member of the San Andreas transform margin in northern California. It is of particular interest for its apparent...

McLaughlin, Robert J.; Moring, Barry C.; Hitchcock, Christopher S.; Valin, Zenon C.
McLaughlin, R.J., Moring, B.C., Hitchcock, C.S., and Valin, Z.C., 2018, Framework geologic map and structure sections along the Bartlett Springs Fault Zone and adjacent area from Round Valley to Wilbur Springs, northern Coast Ranges, California: U.S. Geological Survey, Scientific Investigations Map 3395, scale 1:100,000, pamphlet 60 p., https://doi.org/10.3133/sim3395.

Year Published: 2018

Bedrock Mapping and Seismic Hazard Assessment at Gold Basin Landslide, Washington

The Gold Basin landslide is located along the South Fork Stillaguamish River, within the Mount Baker-Snoqualmie National Forest in western Washington State. Recent concerns related to slope stability after the 2014 State Route 530 Landslide near Oso, Washington, forced the closure of the U.S. Forest Service Gold Basin Campground in May of 2014. In...

Staisch, Lydia M.
Staisch, L.M., 2018, Bedrock mapping and seismic hazard assessment at Gold Basin landslide, Washington: U.S. Geological Survey Open-File Report 2018–1132, 19 p., https://doi.org/10.3133/ofr20181132.

Year Published: 2018

Flushing of the deep Pacific Ocean and the deglacial rise of atmospheric CO2 concentrations

During the last deglaciation (19,000–9,000 years ago), atmospheric CO2increased by about 80 ppm. Understanding the mechanisms responsible for this change is a central theme of palaeoclimatology, relevant for predicting future CO2 transfers in a warming world. Deglacial CO2 rise hypothetically tapped an accumulated deep Pacific carbon...

Du, Jianghui; Haley, Brian; Mix, Alan; Walczak, Maureen; Praetorius, Summer K.
Du, J., Haley, B., Mix, A., Walczak, M., Praetorius, S: Flushing of the deep Pacific Ocean and the deglacial rise of atmospheric CO2 concentrations. Nature Geoscience. 10.1038/s41561-018-0205-6 (2018)

Year Published: 2018

Global and Arctic climate sensitivity enhanced by changes in North Pacific heat flux

Arctic amplification is a consequence of surface albedo, cloud, and temperature feedbacks, as well as poleward oceanic and atmospheric heat transport. However, the relative impact of changes in sea surface temperature (SST) patterns and ocean heat flux sourced from different regions on Arctic temperatures are not well constrained. We modify ocean-...

Praetorius, Summer K.; Rugenstein, Maria A.; Persad, Geeta; Caldeira, Ken
Praetorius, S., Rugenstein, M. Persad, G. Caldeira, K. Global and Arctic climate sensitivity enhanced by changes in North Pacific heat flux, Nature Communications 9: 3124 (2018).

Year Published: 2018

Outburst floods provide erodability estimates consistent with long-term landscape evolution

Most current models for the landscape evolution over geological timescales are based on semi-empirical laws that consider riverbed incision proportional to rock erodability (dependent on lithology) and to the work performed by water flow (stream power). However, the erodability values obtained from these models are entangled with poorly known...

Garcia-Castellanos, Daniel; O'Connor, Jim E.
Garcia-Castellanos, D., and O'Connor, J.E., 2018, Outburst floods provide erodability estimates consistent with long-term landscape evolution: Scientific Reports, https://doi.org/10.1038/s41598-018-28981-y.

Year Published: 2018

Breaching of strike-slip faults and successive flooding of pull-apart basins to form the Gulf of California seaway from ca. 8–6 Ma

The geologic record of the formation of marine basins during continental rifting is uncommonly preserved. Using GIS-based paleotectonic maps, we show that marine basin formation in the Gulf of California–Salton trough oblique rift (Mexico and the United States) occurred in a stepwise manner as crustal thinning lowered elevations within the Gulf of...

Umhoefer, Paul J.; Darin, Michael H.; Bennett, Scott E. K.; Skinner, Lisa A.; Dorsey, Rebecca J.; Oskin, Michael E.
Umhoefer, P. J., Darin, M. H., Bennett, S. E., Skinner, L. A., Dorsey, R. J., & Oskin, M. E. (2018). Breaching of strike-slip faults and successive flooding of pull-apart basins to form the Gulf of California seaway from ca. 8–6 Ma. Geology, 46(8), 695-698.

Year Published: 2018

Geochemical characterization and modeling of regional groundwater contributing to the Verde River, Arizona between Mormon Pocket and the USGS Clarkdale gage

We use synoptic surveys of stream discharge, stable isotopes, and dissolved noble gases to identify the source of groundwater discharge to the Verde River in central Arizona. The Verde River more than doubles in discharge in Mormon Pocket over a 1.4 km distance that includes three discrete locations of visible spring input to the river and other...

Beisner, Kimberly R.; Gardner, W. Payton; Hunt, Andrew G.
Beisner, K.R., Gardner, W.P., Hunt, A.G., (2018) Geochemical characterization and modeling of regional groundwater contributing to the Verde River, Arizona between Mormon Pocket and the USGS Clarkdale gage, Journal of Hydrology. vol. 564, p. 99-114. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.jhydrol.2018.06.078

Year Published: 2018

Rapid 3-D analysis of rockfalls

Recent fatal and damaging rockfalls in Yosemite National Park indicate the need for rapid response data collection methods to inform public safety and assist with management response. Here we show the use of multiple-platform remote sensing methods to rapidly capture pertinent data needed to inform management and the public following a several...

Stock, Greg M.; Guerin, A.; Avdievitch, Nikita N.; Collins, Brian D.; Jaboyedoff, Michel
Stock, G.M., Guerin, A., Avdievitch, N., Collins, B.D., Jaboyedoff, M., 2018, Rapid 3-D analysis of rockfalls, GSA Today, Groundwork, v. 28, https://doi.org/10.1130/GSATG374GW.1.

Year Published: 2018

Against the current— The Mojave River from sink to source: The 2018 Desert Symposium field trip road log

The Mojave River evolved over the past few million years by “fill and spill” from upper basins near its source in the Transverse Ranges to lower basins. Each newly “spilled into” basin in the series? sustained a long-lived lake but gradually filled with Mojave River sediment, leading to spill to a yet lower elevation? basin. The Mojave River...

Miller, David; Reynolds, R.E.; Groover, Krishangi D.; Buesch, David C.; Brown, H. J.; Cromwell, Geoffrey; Densmore-Judy, Jill; Garcia, A.L.; Hughson, D.; Knott, J.R.; Lovich, Jeffrey E.
Miller, D.M., Reynolds, R.E., Groover, K., Buesch, D.C., Brown, H.J., Cromwell, G.A., Densmore, J., Garcia, A.L., Hughson, D., Knott, J.R., and Lovich, J., 2018, Against the current-The Mojave River from sink to source; The 2018 Desert Symposium Field Trip Road Log: California, Desert Symposium meeting in April of 2018.

Year Published: 2018

World distribution of uranium deposits

Deposit data derived from IAEA UDEPO (http://infcis.iaea.org/UDEPO/About.cshtml) database with assistance from P. Bruneton (France) and M. Mihalasky (U.S.A.). The map is an updated companion to "World Distribution of Uranium Deposits (UDEPO) with Uranium Deposit Classification, IAEA Tech-Doc-1629". Geology was derived from L.B. Chorlton,...

Fairclough, M. C.; Irvine, J. A.; Katona, L. F.; Simmon, W. L.; Bruneton, P.; Mihalasky, Mark J.; Cuney, M.; Aranha, M.; Pylypenko, O.; Poliakovska, K.
Fairclough, M.C., Irvine, J.A., Katona, L.F., and Slimmon, W.L., 2018, World distribution of uranium deposits, second edition: International Atomic Energy Agency, Vienna, Austria.

Year Published: 2018

Assessing rockfall susceptibility in steep and overhanging slopes using three-dimensional analysis of failure mechanisms

Rockfalls strongly influence the evolution of steep rocky landscapes and represent a significant hazard in mountainous areas. Defining the most probable future rockfall source areas is of primary importance for both geomorphological investigations and hazard assessment. Thus, a need exists to understand which areas of a steep cliff are more likely...

Matasci, Battista; Stock, Greg M.; Jaboyedoff, Michael; Carrea, Dario; Collins, Brian D.; Guérin, Antoine; Matasci, G.; Ravanel, L.
Matasci B., Stock G.M., Jaboyedoff M., Carrea D., Collins B.D., Guerin A., Matasci G., Ravanel L., 2018, Assessing rockfall susceptibility in steep and overhanging slopes using three-dimensional analysis of failure mechanisms: Landslides, Vol. 15(5), 859–878 .

Year Published: 2018

Crustal structure and quaternary acceleration of deformation rates in central Washington revealed by stream profile inversion, potential field geophysics, and structural geology of the Yakima folds

Post‐Miocene tectonic uplift along fault‐cored anticlines within central Washington produced the Yakima Fold Province, a region of active NNE‐SSW shortening in the Cascadian backarc. The relative timing and rate of deformation along individual structures is coarsely defined yet imperative for seismic hazard assessment. In this work, we use...

Staisch, Lydia M.; Blakely, Richard J.; Kelsey, Harvey; Styron, Richard; Sherrod, Brian
Staisch, L., Blakely, R., Kelsey, H., Styron, R., & Sherrod, B. (2018). Crustal structure and Quaternary acceleration of deformation rates in central Washington revealed by stream profile inversion, potential field geophysics, and structural geology of the Yakima folds. Tectonics, 37. https://doi.org/10.1029/2017TC004916

Filter Total Items: 1
Date published: March 6, 2018

Processing Routines in IDL for Spectroscopic Measurements (PRISM)

PRISM provides a framework to conduct spectroscopic analysis of measurements made using laboratory, field, airborne, and space-based spectrometers. Using PRISM functions, the user can compare the spectra of materials of unknown composition with reference spectra of known materials.

Filter Total Items: 94
monazite grains SEM photo
October 31, 2017

SEM Photo of Monazite Grains with REE

Monazite grains with rare earth elements lanthenum, cerium and neodinium are associated with zirconium, pyrite and potassium feldspar. Mineral identification performed by a combination of scanning of electron microscopy (SEM) and electron microprobe.

October 26, 2017

2017 Oct. Public Lecture — Global Trends in Mineral Commodity Supplies

  • The U.S. is increasingly reliant on supply of mineral raw materials from other countries.
  • Advanced technologies are increasingly making use of nearly the entire periodic table of the elements.
  • Dynamic studies of critical and strategic mineral supply and demand can identify emerging potential supply risks.
  • The USGS - National Minerals
...
Minerals in mobile devices infographic
April 6, 2017

Minerals in Mobile Devices — Infographic

This infographic displays the different minerals located in mobile devices. Included within this infographic are:

  • Display: Silica Sand and Bauxite
    Silica Sand: A mobile device's glass screen is very durable because glassmakers combine its main ingredient, silica (silicon dioxide or quartz) sand, with ceramic materials and then add potassium.
    Bauxite:
...
Full view of Molybdenite
March 23, 2017

Molybdenite

Mineral: Molybdenite
Mineral Origin: Henderson Mine, Empire, CO
Primary Mineral Commodity: Molybdenum
Mineral Commodity Uses: In the late 19th century, French metallurgists discovered that molybdenum, when alloyed (mixed) with steel in small quantities, creates a substance that is remarkably

...
Close up of Vanadinite
March 23, 2017

Vanadinite

Mineral: Vanadinite
Mineral Origin: J.C. Holmes Claim, Patagonia, AZ (Sample donated by G. van Oss)
Primary Commodity: Vanadium
Primary Commodity Uses: Vanadium is used mostly in metal alloys, primarily in car parts and jet engines. The United States is currently 100% reliant on foreign

...
Close up of Lead
March 23, 2017

Lead

Lead is a corrosion-resistant dense metal that is easily molded and shaped. 85% of lead in the US is used for lead-acid batteries, which are used in automobiles, as industrial-type batteries for standby power for computer and telecommunications networks, and for motive power.

Close up of Rutile
March 23, 2017

Rutile

Mineral: Rutile
Primary Commodity: Titanium
Primary Commodity Uses: The vast majority of titanium is used in whiteners in the form of titanium oxide. Titanium metal makes up a comparatively small amount of the use for titanium, but as a metal it is used in metal coatings and medical implants.

Close up of Graphite
March 23, 2017

Graphite in Pegmatite Rock

Mineral: Graphite (C) in pegmatite rock
Mineral Origin: Ticonderoga, NY
Primary Mineral Commodity: Graphite
Mineral Commodity Uses: brake linings, foundry operations, heat-resistant lubricants, refractory applications, and steelmaking

Close up of Chalcopyrite
March 23, 2017

Chalcopyrite

Mineral: Chalcopyrite
Mineral Origin: Bingham Canyon, UT
Primary Commodity: Copper
Primary Commodity Uses: Copper is used primarily in electronics, mostly in building construction and industrial electronics.

Close up of Specularite
March 23, 2017

Specularite

Mineral: Specularite (a variety of Hematite)
Mineral Origin: Republic Mine, MI
Primary Mineral Commodity: Iron
Commodity Uses: Steelmaking

Close up of Chromite
March 23, 2017

Chromite

Mineral: Chromite
Mineral Origin: Owings Mills, MD
Primary Commodity: Chromium
Primary Commodity Uses: Chromium mostly goes into stainless steel and other alloys, as well as in color pigments.

Close up of Conglomerate (Gold Ore)
March 23, 2017

Conglomerate (Gold Ore)

Rock: Conglomerate (Gold Ore) Contains sediments of Precambrian age; contains about 8 grams of gold per ton of rock.
Mineral Origin: Witwatersrand formation, South Africa. The gold in the Witwatersrand Basin area was deposited in Archean river deltas having been washed down from surrounding gold-rich greenstone belts to the north and

...

News Releases, Technical Announcements, and other items of interest. Subscribe to the USGS Minerals News RSS feed to keep up with the latest news.

USGS Minerals News
Filter Total Items: 88
Date published: May 22, 2018

Digital Gold Rush Depends on Traditional Gold

In 1849, the discovery of gold in California sparked one of the most famous gold rushes in history. Thousands trekked across mountainous terrain to seek the precious metal, with entire industries springing up around the rush. In fact, the desire to understand our mineral resource wealth that led to the creation of the U.S. Geological Survey was in part fueled by gold rushes like this one.

Date published: May 18, 2018

Interior Releases 2018’s Final List of 35 Minerals Deemed Critical to U.S. National Security and the Economy

The Department of the Interior today published a list of 35 mineral commodities considered critical to the economic and national security of the United States. This list will be the initial focus of a multi-agency strategy due in August this year to implement President Donald J. Trump's Executive Order to break America's dependence on foreign minerals

Date published: April 5, 2018

USGS Scientists Develop New Tool to Determine if Vermiculite Insulation Contains Asbestos

U.S. Geological Survey scientists and partners have created an onsite, time-saving technique for building inspectors to ascertain whether vermiculite insulation contains amphibole asbestos. The findings are featured in the April 2 edition of American Mineralogist.

Date published: March 1, 2018

Media Advisory: Low-Flying Airplane to Study Geology of the Central Upper Peninsula, Michigan

Residents and visitors may witness a low-flying airplane above the broader Iron Mountain-Escanaba-Marquette region starting at the beginning of April, 2018.

Date published: February 16, 2018

Interior Seeks Public Comment on Draft List of 35 Minerals Deemed Critical to U.S. National Security and the Economy

List includes minerals key to all sectors of economy including tech and defense

Date published: January 25, 2018

Understanding the Mineral Resources of the Midcontinent Rift

The first great geologic expeditions of the United States set off in the mid-1800s, equipped with mules, rifles, and early scientific instruments. Their goal: to uncover the great mineral wealth of the United States and learn about its earliest geologic history.

Date published: November 10, 2017

Investigating Lung Disease in Military Veterans

Six years ago, veterans returning from Iraq and Afghanistan had trouble breathing normally. The list of potential causes that soldiers were exposed to seemed endless: smoke from burn pits used for trash disposal, desert dust, diesel generator exhaust, humidity and temperature extremes, explosives, and city trash and sewage.

Date published: October 11, 2017

EarthWord–Discovery

Eureka often accompanies this EarthWord.

Date published: October 1, 2017

New Uranium Mineral Named for USGS Scientist

Everyone’s seen the news–scientists discover a new species of fly and name it for Beyonce; scientists discover a new species of monkey and auction its name off; etc. Hundreds of new species of animals, plants, and other organisms are discovered and named every year. But did you know that dozens of minerals are discovered every year too?

Date published: September 25, 2017

Helicopter Study to Map Beneath Mountain Watershed Near Crested Butte

Editor:  In the public interest and in accordance with Federal Aviation Administration regulations, the USGS is announcing this low-level airborne project. Your assistance in informing the local communities is appreciated.

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