Conflict Minerals Education: The Main Uses of Conflict Minerals

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Conflict Minerals Education: The Main Uses of Conflict Minerals

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Conflict Minerals Education: The Main Uses of #ConflictMinerals & Derivatives of #conflictminerals.
Monday, December 8, 2014 - 12:20pm

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The large debate regarding conflict minerals has posed many questions of what exactly “conflict minerals” are, what products they are used in, and the derivatives of conflict minerals. To start off, conflict minerals are mainly tin, tantalum, tungsten, and gold (3TG).

Uses for 3TG Conflict Minerals





Often used to coat other metals to prevent their corrosion and to create alloys.

Stores electricity and is used in alloys for its strength.

Commonly used in tools, cell phones, and high-temperature situations, also used in alloys for its strength.

Malleable, not highly corrosive, and highly conducive to electricity and heat.

•   Electronics

•   Batteries

•   Anodes

•   Wire and cable coating

•   Resistors

•   Dielectrics

•   Alloys

•   Bronze

•   Solder

•   Pewter

•   Containers

•   Packaging

•   Paint, oil, polish, cleaners

•   Gas tanks

•   Home and Auto

•   Roofing

•   Water purifiers


•   Electronics 

•   Portable electronics

•   High speed processing

•   Capacitors and resistors

•   Wire

•   LED lights

•   Camera Lenses

•   Fountain and ballpoint pen points

•   Lab Equipment

•   Communications systems

•   Alloys

•   Galvanized, hardened, heavy duty, tempered or heat-treated steel


•   Lighting

•   Filaments

•   Halogen tungsten lamps

•   Fluorescent light bulbs

•   Television tubes

•   Tools

•   Welding tools

•   Drills

•   High-speed cutting tools

•   Hardware

•   Wires

•   Electrodes

•   High temperature lubricants

•   Magnetrons for microwave ovens

•   Jewelry

•   Automatic Watches

•   Joints


•   Electronics

•   Connectors

•   Switch and relay contacts

•   Soldered joints

•   Connecting wires

•   Wire

•   Cell phones

•   Calculators

•   GPS devices

•   Computers

•   Televisions

•   Edge connectors

•   Glass

•   Ruby colored glass



Derivatives of Conflict Minerals 

Another common question asked about Conflict Minerals is: What materials are derived from 3TG conflict minerals, and what is their use? 

Relevant Derivatives of 3TG Conflict Minerals

Conflict Mineral

Derivative Metal




Tin Cassiterite Tetrabutyltin starting material for the di- and tributyl compounds.


Tributyltin oxide, a colorless to pale yellow liquid used in wood preservation.


Triphenyltin acetate, an off-white crystalline solid, used as an insecticide and a fungicide.


Triphenyltin chloride, a white crystalline solid, used as a biocide and an intermediate in chemical synthesis.


Trimethyltin chloride also a biocide.


Triphenyltin hydroxide, an off-white powder, used as a fungicide and to sterilize insects.


Azocyclotin, a colorless crystalline solid, used as a long-acting acaricide for control of spider mites on plants.


Cyhexatin, a white crystalline solid, used as an acaricide and miticide.


Hexamethylditin used as an intermediate in chemical synthesis.


Tantalum Columbite

Tantalum Columbite-tantalite Tantalum oxide is employed in making optical glass and has piezoelectric, maser, and laser applications.


Tantalum alcoholate is used as a catalyst, intermediate for pure tantalates, preparing thin dielectric films. 


Tantalum carbide is used in cutting tools and dies, cemented carbide tools. 


Tantalum (V) chloride is used in chlorination of organic substances, intermediate, production of pure metal.


Tantalum fluoride is used as a catalyst in organic reactions. 


Tantalum disulfide is used as a solid lubricant. 


Tantalum carbide is used as an abrasive. 


Tantalum salts is used in paint and dye industry, in glass and ceramic industry. 


Tantalum oxide is used to make special glass with high index of refraction for camera lenses.



Tungsten Wolframite Tungsten Carbide is used in metalworking, mining, cutting tools bits, heat- and erosion-resistant parts, coatings, seal rings and petroleum.


Calcium and magnesium tungstates are widely used in fluorescent lighting.


Tungsten salts are used in tanning industries.


Tungsten disulphide is used as a dry high temperature lubricant (stable to 500°C).


Tungsten bronzes and other compounds are used as pigments for paints.



Gold Gold Potassium dicyanoaurate, K[Au(CN)2], used in gold electroplating baths.


Chloroauric acid, HAuCl4, used as an intermediate in the production of other gold compounds and occasionally for colouring ceramics. 


Gold salts are also used as anti-inflammatory drugs in the treatment of rheumatoid arthritis.



Source Intelligence is a leading provider of conflict minerals compliance programs, protecting customers’ interests with private industry’s largest registry of suppliers, a platform to manage and connect business partners, and a portfolio of compliance programs for all regulated materials. Their research is regularly updated to provide information about the origins and uses of Conflict Minerals. 

Source Intelligence® Contact:

Lina Ramos, Chief Business Officer
(877) 916 6337 ext. 1017

Keywords: Ethical Production & Consumption | Awards & Recognition | Conflict Minerals | Conflict Minerals 101 | Conflict Minerals Regulation | Diversity & Human Resources | Dodd Frank Act Section 1502 | Education | Environment & Climate Change | Media & Communications | Reports

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