China, Brazil, Australia, Russia, and Ukraine are the five biggest producers of iron ore, but significant amounts are also mined in India, the United States, Canada, and Kazakhstan. Together, these nine countries produce 80 percent of the worlds iron ore.
Iron ore is the raw material used to make pig iron, which is one of the main raw materials to make steel98% of the mined iron ore is used to make steel. In 2011 the Financial Times has speculated that iron ore is "more integral to the global economy than any other commodity, except perhaps oil".
It is a mixture of iron, oxygen and other elements, mixed in with sands and clays. Image, right: ore being mined from bell pits at Wilsontown. To make a useable metal, an ironworks has to get rid of the unwanted components of this mixture and keep as much of the iron as possible, producing a purer metal. The iron making process develops. Iron ...
Iron processing Iron processing Iron making: The primary objective of iron making is to release iron from chemical combination with oxygen, and, since the blast furnace is much the most efficient process, it receives the most attention here. Alternative methods known as direct reduction are used in over a score of countries, but less than 5 percent of iron is made this way.