On display at Michigan Tech in Houghton, Michigan, is a three and a half ton nickel-copper sulfide rock that was discovered deep in the Eagle Mine, according to ABC 10. The rock is a strong indicator of “the wealth of minerals below the surface,” and the vast resources that may be found in Michigan. However, in order to access such wealth, Keweenaw Bureau reporter Rick Allen explains that a comprehensive government-funded geological survey is needed.
A lack of government funding has prevented the state geologist of Michigan from administering a geological survey for more than 30 years. Technological advancements over the course of the past three decades now allow geologists to search beyond surface tables for deeper exploration, and with the help of this new technology, if funding is secured, a survey “could lead to further exploration of mineral deposits and ultimately jobs,” Allen shares.
Michigan’s geological survey director, John Yellich, explains that this part of Michigan is a fantastic location for mining because of the infrastructure already in place. He explains that “the infrastructure here means that we have electrical, we have Internet access, and we have roads,” all of which are components of a modern mining operation.
The U.S. has more than $6.2 trillion in minerals resources and the development of new technology could lead to even greater opportunities. The discovery of the nickel-copper sulfide rock is just one example of the growing knowledge we have of mineral resources in the U.S. Minerals are a key building block of the tools and technologies vital to our modern lives, including our infrastructure, vehicles, technology, medicine, and more.
Learn more about the display of the nickel-copper sulfide rock here.