from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 4th Edition
- n. Any of several red-brown to black minerals with the general formula (Fe,Mn)WO4, which constitute a major source of tungsten.
from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License
- n. A mineral that consists of a tungstate of iron and manganese; (Fe,Mn)WO4.
from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English
- n. Tungstate of iron and manganese, generally of a brownish or grayish black color, submetallic luster, and high specific gravity. It occurs in cleavable masses, and also crystallized. Called also wolfram.
from The Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia
- n. See wolfram.
from WordNet 3.0 Copyright 2006 by Princeton University. All rights reserved.
- n. a mineral consisting of iron and manganese tungstate in crystalline form; the principal ore of tungsten; found in quartz veins associated with granitic rocks
The minerals in question—cassiterite, columbite-tantalite, gold and wolframite—are widely used in consumer electronics and other products, although Congo supplies no more than 20% of global demand for these raw materials.
On April 23rd, Republican senator Sam Brownback introduced the Congo Conflict Minerals Act of 2009, cosponsored by senators Russ Feingold and Dick Durbin, which would require American companies mining coltan, cassiterite, and wolframite to report annually to the Security and Exchange Commission (SEC), the agency that regulates American financial markets, to disclose the country of origin of the minerals to the Securities and Exchange Commission.
Like the activists who lobbied for the legislation, Dodd-Frank assumes that minerals such as gold, wolframite, coltan and tin, which are extracted from areas under the control of armed groups, drive the conflict, and therefore, curbing the trade would bring peace to the region.
Building on the work of a coalition of a dozen major humanitarian organizations and industry pioneers, the bill establishes a new mechanism that will limit the ability of armed groups to profit from the illicit mining and sale of cassiterite, coltan, and wolframite and other "conflict minerals."
In the Democratic Republic of Congo, armed groups force villagers to mine minerals like wolframite and cassiterite.
The pending bills in the Senate and House would force companies to determine and disclose whether coltan, tin, gold, and wolframite used in their products originated in war-torn areas of the Congo, information that the U.S. government would then make public.
Furthermore, in September 2009 it formed a regional steering committee charged with implementing plans that will allow member states to act in concert against illegal exploitation of natural resources and to establish a regional certification system for gold, tin, coltan, and wolframite.
Despite 10 years of United Nations reporting about vicious violence connected with gold, tin, coltan and wolframite, many international refining and trading companies insist, implicitly or explicitly, that their due diligence need not extend to the origins of these minerals.
Tungsten was discovered in 1758 by Axel Fredrik Cronstadt; in 1781 Carl Wilhelm Scheele isoldated a tungsten oxide, and in 1783 the Spanish chemists (and brothers) Fausto and Juan Jose de Elhuyar first separated tungsten from the mineral wolframite.
Tungsten is retrieved from the ore minerals scheelite (CaWO4, calcium tungstate) and wolframite ((Fe, Mn) WO4, iron-manganese tungstate).