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A metal with the descriptor “ferrous” means that it has iron in its composition. When the term ferrous metal is used, it also usually implies that iron is a large percentage of the elemental composition. If it’s not the most abundant element, it would probably be the second or third most prolific. If a metal only contains trace amounts of iron, as many metals do, then that small amount is not considered enough to declare the metal ferrous.
Non-ferrous metal is a metal, including alloys, that does not contain iron (ferrite) in appreciable amounts. Generally more costly than ferrous metals, non-ferrous metals are used because of desirable properties such as low weight (e.g. aluminium), higher conductivity (e.g. copper), non-magnetic property or resistance to corrosion (e.g. zinc). Some non-ferrous materials are also used in the iron and steel industries. For example, bauxite is used as flux for blast furnaces, while others such as wolframite, pyrolusite and chromite are used in making ferrous alloys.
Precious metals are rare, naturally occurring metallic chemical element of high economic value. Chemically, the precious metals tend to be less reactive than most elements. They are usually ductile and have a high lustre.
Non-metals are minerals (Non-metallic minerals) which, as a rule, do not serve as raw material for the extraction of metal. The group of non-metals, which is widespread amongst the variety of minerals, is of great economic significance.
Energy minerals are used to produce electricity, fuel for transportation, heating for homes and offices and in the manufacture of plastics. Energy minerals include coal, oil, natural gas and uranium.
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