Incredible Minerals Today

Ten more reasons why diatomaceous earth is good for the soil & animal care

Posted by Julie Brown

Jan 27, 2017 10:57:20 AM

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There are so many uses and applications for diatomaceous earth (DE) all around the world today. One of the main uses for DE is a filter media for wine, beer, juice, oil, and swimming pools. Another main use for diatomaceous earth is as a functional additive for paint & coatings.  Then there's DE as an insecticide, animal feed, soil amendment, absorbent, seed coating and in fertilizer. The applications for DE are endless. In this post from Quantum Agriculture, Australia, Alan Johnstone covers what DE is and key uses for soil and animal care. The Aussie vernacular makes this post even more interesting.

Diatomaceous Earth consists of the fossilized remains of millions of microscopic single cell plants called diatoms which were deposited millions of years ago on the beds of oceans and lakes. Its uses in agriculture are many. It is a useful addition to compost heaps and the soil because it is a once living form of silica and has high paramagnetism. It stimulates healthy growth of plant root systems. It conditions the soil by making silica available to plants, improving cation exchange capacity, soil conductivity, and helps the soil to retain water. It is advised that a calcium source (hydrated lime, agricultural lime or gypsum) be added at the same time so that the calcium and cations can occupy the sites left by aluminum which is bounded by the soluble silica.

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Topics: Diatomaceous Earth

Thanksgiving, Pilgrims, Wine & Diatomaceous Earth Filtration

Posted by Julie Brown

Nov 22, 2016 12:06:58 PM

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Cork the wine! What did the pilgrims really drink on Thanksgiving?

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Topics: Filtration, Diatomaceous Earth

Diatomaceous earth proves key to electric car battery challenge

Posted by Julie Brown

Oct 27, 2016 2:12:37 PM

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Diatomaceous earth is truly incredible. Every day we find a new use or application for our DE. This week, UC Riverside engineering professors announced that they're using DE as a source of silica for electric car battery anodes. Hello, Elon Musk and Mr. Panasonic!

Most people who believe in the electric car revolution would agree with this statement: “Batteries that power electric vehicles are expensive and need to be frequently charged, which causes anxiety for consumers and negatively impacts the sale of these vehicles. To improve the adoption of electric vehicles, we need much better batteries.”

 Those are the words of Mihri Ozkan, a professor of electrical engineering at the University of California – Riverside’s Bourns College of Engineering. He and his colleague Cengiz Ozkan, a professor of mechanical engineering at UCR, have recently published a paper in the journal Scientific Reports entitled “Carbon-Coated, Diatomite-Derived Nanosilicon as a High Rate Capable Li-ion Battery Anode.”  Mihri Ozkan says, “We believe diatomaceous earth, which is abundant and inexpensive, could be another sustainable source of silicon for battery anodes.”

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Topics: Diatomaceous Earth

Dynamite! Alfred Nobel's Birthday and Diatomaceous Earth

Posted by Julie Brown

Oct 21, 2016 11:37:55 AM

Alfred Nobel.jpg Alfred Nobel, inventor of dynamite

183 years ago today, the famous chemist Alfred Nobel was born in Sweden. You probably know his name because of the Nobel Prize, the highly respected award that is given in the fields of peace, literature, chemistry, economics, physics and medicine. But Nobel is also well-known for something else – dynamite. The material that Nobel mixed with nitroglycerin to form dynamite was diatomaceous earth!

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Topics: Diatomaceous Earth

EP Minerals Celebrates National Diatomaceous Earth (DE) Day

Posted by Julie Brown

Aug 31, 2016 8:05:24 AM

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Most people know of diatomaceous earth because they use it to filter their swimming pools or for its natural insecticide properties to control insects in their homes or gardens. Biologists know about diatoms, the single-celled plants that form diatomaceous earth, because they are truly the lungs of the earth, in that they produce about ¾ of the world’s new oxygen supply. Materials scientists know about diatom skeletons (called frustules), the tiny, intricate porous opal structures, because they are known to be the strongest naturally-occurring substances.

On August 31, we celebrate National Diatomaceous Earth Day to recognize the diatom and the remarkable substance it creates, diatomaceous earth.

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Topics: Diatomaceous Earth

Celebrate National Diatomaceous Earth (DE) Day on August 31

Posted by Julie Brown

Aug 17, 2016 3:34:20 PM

DE-Mines4-650x375-web.jpg

Most people know of diatomaceous earth because they use it to filter their swimming pools or for its natural insecticide properties to control insects in their homes or gardens. Biologists know about diatoms, the single-celled plants that form diatomaceous earth, because they are truly the lungs of the earth, in that they produce about ¾ of the world’s new oxygen supply. Materials scientists know about diatom skeletons (called frustules), the tiny, intricate porous opal structures, because they are known to be the strongest naturally-occurring substances.

On August 31, we celebrate National Diatomaceous Earth Day to recognize the diatom and the remarkable substance it creates, diatomaceous earth.

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Topics: Diatomaceous Earth

Fish fossils in the desert, diatomaceous earth and Nevada teachers

Posted by Julie Brown

Jul 15, 2016 11:22:38 AM

teacher_fun_with_de.jpg Nevada STEM teachers finding stickleback fish fossils at EP Minerals' diatomaceous earth mine

Earlier this week, teachers from Northern Nevada took a graduate-level, for-credit course called Earth Systems Matter, at the EP Minerals' Hazen, Nevada diatomaceous earth (DE) mine. This was no ordinary tour, mind you. Not only did the teachers learn about the history and geology of DE (from EP Minerals' Mine & Exploration Manager Skylar Burdette,) they also got to dig for 7-10 million year old stickleback fish fossils! Through the Nevada Mining Association, EP Minerals regularly offers this class to Northern Nevada teachers. It’s critical that teachers go back to their classrooms and teach their students about the importance of mining and minerals in our lives. 

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Topics: Diatomaceous Earth