Utilization of Quantitative Microscopic Techniques in the Study of Ore Minerals


Quantitative techniques have become increasingly important in recent years in the study of ore minerals. Precise measurement of indentation hardness and reflectance is the most important quantitative ore microscopic technique for mineral identification. Reflectance measurements of various wave lengths under monochromatic light provide the data necessary for the preparation of spectral reflectance curves and for the quantitative determination of an ore mineral's color. The procedures for the measurement of indentation hardness, reflectance, and color coordinates have recently been standardized and 204 items of quantitative data for ore minerals are now available in the first issue of the quantitative data file of the International Mineralogical Association's Commission on Ore Microscopy. A number of systems utilizing these quantitative data for systematic ore mineral identification have been published and others are in preparation. Rotation properties, although not included on the data cards, are useful in the identification of certain groups of minerals. Other aspects of quantitative ore microscopic techniques include the utilization of automatic image analysis for mineral percentage determinations and the use of various microbeam instruments for elemental analyses. These techniques provide a greatly improved basis for mineral identification in mineralogical and beneficiation studies.

Meeting Name

Symposium on Process Mineralogy (1981: Feb., Chicago, IL)


Geosciences and Geological and Petroleum Engineering

Keywords and Phrases

Automatic Image Analysis; Color Coordinates; Commission On Ore Microscopy Data Card File; Indentation Hardness; International Mineralogical Association Data Card File; Microbeam Instruments; Mineral Identification; Reflectance; Applications; Mineralogy

International Standard Book Number (ISBN)


Document Type

Article - Conference proceedings

Document Version


File Type





© 1981 Metallurgical Society of AIME, All rights reserved.

Publication Date

01 Feb 1981

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