Australia’s mined zinc production

Australia’s mined zinc production (in metal content terms) in the June quarter 2011 totalled 384000 tonnes, an increase of 14 per cent from the March quarter 2011. The increase in production reflected better weather conditions in Queensland, which affected production in the March quarter. In line with higher production, zinc export volumes (in metal content terms) increased by 21 per cent quarter on quarter, to 421000 tonnes. Australia’s zinc export values in the June quarter increased by 11 per cent, relative to the March quarter, to $637 million, underpinned by an increase in export volumes.
Zinc mine production (in metal content terms) increased by 9 per cent in 2010–11, relative to 2009–10, to total 1.5 million tonnes. This was supported by increased production at Xstrata’s Mount Isa operations, Terramin’s Angus Zinc mine, and CBH’s Endeavour Mine. Further increases in zinc production in 2010–11 were limited by adverse weather conditions affecting production at a number of mines at the beginning of 2011. Refined zinc production decreased by 3 per cent in 2010–11, relative to 2009–10, to total 499000 tonnes as the availability of refinery feedstock was affected by the adverse weather conditions. Read More


zinc miningZinc is a mineral that is usually not found by itself. Some ores that have zinc in them are: sphalerite, franklinite, willemite, zincite, smithsonite, hemimorphite, and hydrozincite. Some of these ores are fluorescent. Zinc is found in igneous and metamorphic rocks. A sheet of zinc would look like a sheet of aluminum but it would be heavier.

How and where is it mined? Zinc ore is mined using underground and Surface [Open-pit] mining or a combination of both. The Sterling Hill Mine is famous for mining zinc. The mines are closed now except for tours. After the ore is mined, they do something called flash smelting where they heat up the ore until it makes zinc oxide [zinc + oxygen]. The zinc ends up as powder. Zinc ore is mined in China, Australia, Peru, Canada, and the U.S. [Alaska, Tennessee, Missouri].

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