Metals are extracted (or ‘mined’) from the Earth in different ways. ‘Open-cast mining’ is used where soft ores, such as copper, iron and aluminium, are found near the surface. The ore is loosened and broken up with explosives before it is loaded on to trucks.

Other ores are dug from tunnels hundreds of metres below the surface. This is called ‘underground mining’ and is more difficult than mining at the surface.

Miners dig a deep shaft into the Earth and blast the ore free with drills or explosives before taking the ore to the surface. Dredging is another method used to collect metals that are deposited in rocks in river beds or other sources of water.

Some gold mines in South Africa are over 3,800 metres deep. Dredging for tin in Malaysia. Open-cast copper mining – the copper ore is excavated and carried to waiting wagons.

Picture Credit : Google