The opening of a mine tunnel. Sometimes this goes into
a horizontal tunnel and sometimes to a tunnel that slants
Auger: A big drill that is like a
gigantic screw. It bores holes in rock
A straight piece of wood or metal that is used to hold up
walls or roofs of a mine.
Bed: A layer of minerals,
gemstones, ore, or rock.
Bituminous coal: It is a form of coal
that is harder than peat but softer than anthracite.
Black damp: The gas mixture is a
combination of carbon dioxide and nitrogen and forms in
mines. It is dangerous and can explode.
Borehole: A drilled hole that is
deep and long.
Claim: In the old days, a person
would choose a place to mine. He would register this
land as his claim and no one else was able to take it from
Claim jumping: When someone would
take land that someone else registered as his own.
Coke: Something that is made by
heating up coal.
Compacted: pressed together using a lot
miner: A machine that digs the coal off of the
walls of the mine AND then loads it in a device to take it
out of the mine.
Conveyor: a platform with sides
that moves mined materials into a mine shuttle to take it
out of the mine.
Deposit: A rock, mineral, or
gemstone that builds up in the Earth by itself.
Dragline: A machine with a long,
lasso-like device on it that is pulled over the land in
mountaintop removal. It is pulled over an area and it
clears out the trees and the top levels of dirt called
Drought: When an area doesn't get rain
for a very long time.
Erosion: The wearing
away of layers of rock and minerals by wind, rain, and other
Explosive: Dynamite is usually
used to make an explosion that will break up rock so that
the miners can take it out better, or reach other minerals.
Fire damp: When gases sit in
mines and become a danger for miners. They will ignite
Flogging: This is a kind of punishment
where someone is beaten with a whip or a stick.
Fluoresce/fluorescent: When light shines on
something that is fluorescent, it makes it glow. An
example of this is when we went into the zinc mine. An
ultraviolet light was shined on the rock and then turned
off. This made the rock give off its own light--even
after the ultraviolet one was turned off. When
something fluoresces, it means that it gives off its own
Geologist: a person who studies the
earth--how it was formed and what it's made of.
tunnel that is used for the miners to go in and out of
Miner: A person who takes rocks,
minerals, or gemstones out of the Earth.
apparatus: A device that is used to give oxygen to the
miner if he becomes trapped in a mine.
Self-rescuer: A smaller device that
filters out gas and supplies oxygen to miners.
Shaft: A mine tunnel that is used to
bring in air, miners, or equipment. It can also be
used to take out whatever is mined.
Shuttle car: A vehicle that is used to
take ore out of the mine.
Sluice: Usually a wooden channel that water
flows through. It has a lever to stop water from going
down. It is used in placer mining.
Tunnel: An underground passage that is
used for miners, equipment, or machinery to get from one
area of the mine to another.
Valley fills: A place in the
valley where the dirt, rocks, trees, and plants get
dumped from mountaintop mining.
Vein: A long layer of rocks or minerals.
Ventilation: The way that air is
forced into a mine so that the miners always have good air
Vigilante justice: This is when people don't
wait for law officers to take care of people who break the
law. Vigilantes decide what punishment the person will
get and it is often more cruel than what real law would give
Wedge: A triangular piece of wood
or metal that is forced between a beam and the ceiling to
keep the beam tight and the roof stable.