Everyday Science: Iron Quiz

By: Staff

How plentiful is iron in the Earth's crust?

The Earth's crust is 5 percent iron, and in some areas it concentrates in ores that contain as much as 70 percent iron.

Which of the following is not true of iron?

Although iron can be magnetized and is easy to shape after being heated, it is susceptible to rust. But you can control rust with paint, galvanizing, chrome plating or sacrificial anodes.

Which of the following is a common ore from which we can extract iron?

Hematite is a common ore that contains about 70 percent iron.

What do you have to eliminate to get iron from iron ore?

If you look at the chemical makeup of the various iron ores, they all contain iron combined with oxygen. To make iron from iron ore, you need to eliminate the oxygen.

Which of the following statements about steel and iron is true?

Steel is stronger than iron. Steel is iron that has most of the impurities -- such as silica, phosphorous and sulfur -- removed, making it stronger.

In a bloomery, iron is heated into a spongy mass known as a bloom. What do you get when you heat and hammer the bloom?

By heating and hammering the bloom, the glassy silicates mix into the iron metal to create wrought iron. Wrought iron is tough and easy to work, making it perfect for creating tools in a blacksmith shop.

From pig iron, you can make which of the following?

You can make either wrought iron or steel out of pig iron. To create wrought iron, you melt it, mix it with slag and hammer it to eliminate most of the carbon. Steel can be made out of pig iron through the use of an open hearth furnace, a basic oxygen furnace, or using the Bessemer process.

In a blast furnace, what do you call the material that forms when the calcium from limestone combines with silicates?

Slag forms when the calcium in the limestone combines with the silicates. At the bottom of the blast furnace, liquid iron collects along with a layer of slag on top.

What do you add to steel to make stainless-steel?

Adding 10 percent to 30 percent chromium to steel creates stainless-steel, which is very resistant to rust. The addition of chromium and molybdenum creates chrome-moly steel, which is strong and light.

When did iron become an important material for human societies?

Iron became important around 1000 B.C. It was so important that primitive societies are measured by the point at which they learned how to refine iron and enter the Iron Age.

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About This Quiz

One could safely say that we've built civilization itself on iron and it's seemingly infinite uses. From early tools to trains, iron is responsible for thrusting humanity into rapid advancement. But how much do you know about the extraction process?

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