Adit - A passageway or opening driven horizontally into the side of a hill generally for the purpose of exploring or otherwise opening a mineral deposit. An adit is open to the atmosphere at one end, a tunnel at both ends.
Airway - Any passage through which air is carried. Also known as an air course.
Anemometer – An instrument used to measure wind force
Assay - To test ores or minerals by chemical or other methods for the purpose of determining the amount of valuable metals contained.
Back - The roof or upper part in any underground mining cavity.
Backstope - The initial lift or slice when commencing to stope or mine from a drift.
Barring Down – The process of removing loose or hanging rock from the tunnel walls.
Bedrock - Solid rock forming the earth's crust, frequently covered by overburden or water.
Bit - The cutting end of boring instrument. In rock drilling, it is frequently made with ultra-hard material such as diamonds or tungsten carbide.
Blast Hole - A hole drilled for purposes of blasting rather than for exploration or geological information.
Blasting agent - Any material consisting of a mixture of a fuel and an oxidizer.
Blasting cap - A detonator containing a charge of detonating compound, which is ignited by electric current or the spark of a fuse. Used for detonating explosives.
Blasting circuit - Electric circuits used to fire electric detonators or to ignite an igniter cord by means of an electric starter.
Bonanza - Very rich ore, or situation.
Bulkhead – A door or partition used to close an area off.
Bullion - Metal in bars, ingots or other un-coined form.
Cave-In – A phrase used to describe the collapse of the mine tunnel’s roof and walls. Also used to identify the site where a mine has collapsed.
Chute - An inclined opening, usually constructed of timber and equipped with a gate, through which ore is drawn from a stope into mine cars.
Claim - A portion of mining land held under federal or provincial law.
Cap - A miner's safety helmet. Also, a highly sensitive, encapsulated explosive that is used to detonate larger but less sensitive explosives.
Color – Mining term for visual trace indicators of mineral in an ore sample.
Competent rock - Rock which, because of its physical and geological characteristics, is capable of sustaining openings without any structural support except pillars and walls left during mining (stalls, light props, and roof bolts are not considered structural support).
Core - The long cylinder of rock, about one inch or more in diameter, that is recovered by the diamond drill.
Core sample – A cylinder sample generally 1-5" in diameter drilled out of an area to determine the geologic and chemical analysis of the overburden and coal.
Crosscut - A horizontal opening driven across the course of a vein or structure, or in general across the strike of the rock formation; a connection from a shaft to an ore structure.
Crusher - A machine for crushing rock, such as a gyratory crusher, jaw crusher, stamp mill, etc.
Deposit - Mineral deposit or ore deposit is used to designate a natural occurrence of a useful mineral, or an ore, in sufficient extent and degree of concentration to invite exploitation.
Dip - The angle at which a vein, structure or rock bed is inclined from the horizontal, measured at right angles to the strike.
Drift (Drive) - A horizontal passage underground that follow along the length of a vein or rock formation as opposed to a crosscut which crosses the rock formation.
Drifter- A rock drill used for boring horizontal holes for blasting.
Drill - A machine utilizing rotation, percussion (hammering), or a combination of both to make holes. If the hole is much over 0.4m in diameter, the machine is called a borer.
Dump - A pile or heap of rock or ore on the surface.
Entry - An underground horizontal or near-horizontal passage used for haulage, ventilation, or as a mainway; a coal heading; a working place where the coal is extracted from the seam in the initial mining; same as "gate" and "roadway," both British terms.
Exploration - The prospecting, diamond drilling and other work involved in searching for ore.
Explosive - Any rapidly combustive or expanding substance. The energy released during this rapid combustion or expansion can be used to break rock.
Extraction - The process of mining and removal of cal or ore from a mine.
Face - As applied to a drift, crosscut or stope, is the farthest point of tunnel in which work is progressing.
Fault - A slip-surface between two portions of the earth's surface that have moved relative to each other. A fault is a failure surface and is evidence of severe earth stresses.
Fall - A mass of roof rock or coal which has fallen in any part of a mine.
Fin Ho – The angled shovel used by miners.
Fine Gold - Almost pure gold. Fineness is the proportion of pure gold or silver in jewelry or bullion expressed in parts per thousand. Thus, 925 fine gold indicates 925 parts out of 1,000, or 92.5%, is pure gold.
Fissure - An extensive crack, break or fracture in rocks.
Float - Pieces of rock that have been broken off and moved from their original location by natural forces such as frost action or glaciers.
Formation – Any assemblage of rocks which have some character in common, whether of origin, age, or composition. Often, the word is loosely used to indicate anything that has been formed or brought into its present shape.
Fracture - A general term to include any kind of discontinuity in a body of rock if produced by mechanical failure, whether by shear stress or tensile stress. Fractures include faults, shears, joints, and planes of fracture cleavage.
Free Milling - Ores of gold or silver from which the precious metals can be recovered by concentrating methods without resort to roasting or chemical treatment.
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