Thermodynamic Cradle-to-Cradle Assessment of the Earth's Mineral Resources

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* Book: Thanatia: The Destiny of the Earth's Mineral Resources. A Thermodynamic Cradle-to-Cradle Assessment. By Antonio Valero Capilla and Alicia Valero Delgado. World Scientific, 2014

URL = http://www.worldscientific.com/worldscibooks/10.1142/7323


Description

"Is Gaia becoming Thanatia, a resource exhausted planet? For how long can our high-tech society be sustained in the light of declining mineral ore grades, heavy dependence on un-recycled critical metals and accelerated material dispersion? These are all root causes of future disruptions that need to be addressed today.

This book presents a cradle-to-cradle view of the Earth's abiotic resources through a novel and rigorous approach based on the Second Law of Thermodynamics: heat dissipates and materials deteriorate and disperse. Quality is irreversibly lost. This allows for the assessment of such depletion and can be used to estimate the year where production of the main mineral commodities could reach its zenith. By postulating Thanatia, one acquires a sense of destiny and a concern for a unified global management of the planet's abiotic resource endowment.

The book covers the core aspects of geology, geochemistry, mining, metallurgy, economics, the environment, thermodynamics and thermochemistry. It is supported by comprehensive databases related to mineral resources, including detailed compositions of the Earth's layers, thermochemical properties of over 300 substances, historical energy and mineral resource inventories, energy consumption and environmental impacts in the mining and metallurgical sector and world recycling rates of commodities."


Contents

Contents:

The Threads: Minerals, Economy and Thermodynamics:

The Depletion of Non-Renewable Abiotic Resources

Economic versus Thermodynamic Accounting

From Thermodynamics to Economics and Ecology

Physical Geonomics: A Cradle-Grave-Cradle Approach for Mineral Depletion Assessment

Over the Rainbow: From Nature to Industry:

The Geochemistry of the Earth

The Resources of the Earth

An Introduction to Mining and Metallurgy

Metallurgy of Key Minerals

Down the Rainbow: From Grave to Cradle:

Thermodynamics of Mineral Resources

Thanatia and the Crepuscular Earth Model

The Exergy of the Earth and Its Mineral Resources

The Exergy Replacement Costs of Mineral Wealth

The Exergy Evolution of Mineral Wealth

Tying the Rainbows: Towards a Rational Management of Resources:

Recycling Solutions

The Challenge of Resource Depletion

The Principles of Resource Efficiency

Epilogue

Excerpt