The forgotten Benbulben Barite Mines – Ireland

In a beautiful and remote area of Ireland are the remains of Benbulben Barite Mine. The once industrious mine was used to unearth barite ore, a naturally occurring mineral used in cement as an aggregate, or ground down and used as a filler or extender. It’s an agent in the sugar refining process, a white pigment in paint and paper, and used as a weighting agent in oil and gas exploration mining, among many other industrial-type things. Due its chemical stability it can be used to give added value to…

Read More

The tragedy of Aberfan: what happened that fateful October 21, 1966

A terrible tragedy known across the world by the name of the South Wales village where it happened, Aberfan, occurred on this day, October 21, 1966, when millions of cubic metres of excavated mining debris came thundering down a hillside, engulfing a farm, several houses, and also Pantglas Junior school, where 116 children died. In those days big lump coal was required for domestic heating so waste and fine particles left after the washing process, was loaded onto rail trams and dumped. Every mining community had its tips, and the…

Read More