Where do we find lead?



  1. 0 Votes

    Lead makes up about 0.0013% of the Earth’s crust. It is not usually found in a form by itself, but most commonly found with galena, anglesite, cerussite, and mimetite, so those have to be burned away and separated from the lead. The world’s top producers of lead are Australia, China, U.S., Peru, Canada, Mexico, and Sweden. It is mined fairly easily because it is near the surface of the earth.

  2. 0 Votes

    The minerals named in the other answer are lead compounds, so it’s not a case of lead being found with them – the lead is an integral, chemical part of those minerals.  China is the world leader in lead production, with triple Australia’s production.

  3. 0 Votes

    To help clarify things a bit, lead is most often extracted from copper, zinc, and silver.  These are the ores that genrally contain the highest percentage of lead.  The process to extract the lead essentially involves crushing the original ore and then blasting the remains with high intensity heat.  As the metals liquify, the lead will sink to the bottom of the collected molten metals.  This is a highly simplified version of the process, but you get the idea.

    • 0 Votes

      While lead is indeed produced as a by-product of other metal mining and processing, in the US most lead from mines is a primary product derived from the primary lead ore, galena. It still has to be smelted as you describe, but it’s not really a by-product as much as it is a primary mine product. However, secondary lead, recovered in metal refineries from scrap and recycled material, provides nearly three times the amount of lead than comes from mines (in the US).

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