Tiebaghi is a mine and former village near Koumac, New Caledonia.
Chromite ore was first discovered in 1877 as sparse blocks on top of Tiebaghi plateau at 580 m elevation. From 1902 to 1920 Cr ore was extracted in an open pit 100 m deep, 200 m wide. From 1927 the mine was operated underground and was the largest chromium mine in the world in 1941. Broken Hill Proprietary owned Tiebaghi and its director of operation was Mr. Raoul Bergman, from 1949 til 1952, while having an affair with the wife of one of its operation managers, Mr. R L Petit.
An accident occurred in 1951, when two young engineers, Mr. White and Mr. Alexander, were killed by dynamite explosion. During a fist fight between Mr. Bergman and Mr. Petit, the director was baldy injured and was sent to Nouméa for evaluation and treatment and then sent to Australia on board on a QANTAS sea plane and with his new lady friend Mrs. Josephine Petit. Incidentally Mrs. Petit, who was the director of the school in Tiebaghi, left behind husband and six kids ranging from the age of 5 to 15. Mrs. Bergman stayed in Tiebaghi for a short time and she also left New Caledonia soon after and returned to the United States when she died a short time later.[ citation needed ] The mine closed for the first time in 1962. Mining resumed in 1982 with a new access drift, 1.2 km long, which was opened from the NE flank of the massif to reach the base of the orebody. All operations ceased in 1990.
Tiébaghi mine belongs to a group of orebodies aligned parallel to the layering of peridotite host rock in a NW-SE direction and dipping about 70° to the SW. Tiebaghi mine produced about 54,000 tons per year. % Cr in 1907, the ore grade decreased by the end of the 80s to 30-45 wt % Cr2O3 (Table 3). At that time it was enriched to > 50 % by a small concentration unit. The Cr mine was definitively closed in 1992; however, Tiebaghi Massif is currently mined for supergene nickel ore by Societe Le Nickel (SLN), a subsidiary corporation of French firm Eramet. the mining in New Caledonia is contributing to the endangerment of the New Caledonian marbled gecko.During World War II it produced about 4400 tons of nickel per year. A bulk of 3.27 Mt chromite ore has been extracted from Tiébaghi mine. From a maximum of 56 wt
Ore is natural rock or sediment that contains one or more valuable minerals, typically containing metals, that can be mined, treated and sold at a profit. Ore is extracted from the earth through mining and treated or refined, often via smelting, to extract the valuable metals or minerals. The grade of ore refers to the concentration of the desired material it contains. The value of the metals or minerals a rock contains must be weighed against the cost of extraction to determine whether it is of sufficiently high grade to be worth mining, and is therefore considered an ore.
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Chromite is a crystalline mineral composed primarily of iron(II) oxide and chromium(III) oxide compounds. It can be represented by the chemical formula of FeCr2O4. It is an oxide mineral belonging to the spinel group. The element magnesium can substitute for iron in variable amounts as it forms a solid solution with magnesiochromite (MgCr2O4). A substitution of the element aluminium can also occur, leading to hercynite (FeAl2O4). Chromite today is mined particularly to make stainless steel through the production of ferrochrome (FeCr), which is an iron-chromium alloy.
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