The Mining markets include mining, quarrying, and oil and gas extraction companies. Companies in this sector extract naturally occurring mineral solids, such as coal and ores; liquid minerals, such as crude petroleum; and gases, such as natural gas. The term Mining is used in the broad sense to include quarrying, well operations, beneficiating (e.g., crushing, screening, washing, and flotation), and other work performed at a mine site.
The sector distinguishes mine operation and mining support activities. Mine operation includes operating mines, quarries, or oil and gas wells. Mining support activities include performing exploration or other mining services.
Markets in the Mining sector are classified according to the natural resource mined or to be mined. Industries include companies that develop the mine site, extract the natural resources, and/or those that prepare the mineral mined. Beneficiation is the preparation process wherein the extracted material is reduced to particles that can be separated into mineral and waste. Operations that take place in beneficiation are primarily mechanical– grinding, washing, magnetic separation, and centrifugal separation. The extent of beneficiation varies by mineral and the purity of any given ore deposit. While some minerals, such as petroleum and natural gas, require little or no beneficiation, others are washed and screened, while yet others, such as gold and silver, can be transformed into bullion before leaving the mine site.