13 Nov, 23

The Surprising Scarcity Of Suitable Sand

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The single most abundant element in the Earth’s crust is oxygen making up 46.6 percent of the mass. The second most abundant element is silicon making up 27.7 percent, mostly in the form of various molecules combining silicon and oxygen. Silicon dioxide is the kind people are familiar with and it is found on most, but not all beaches of the world. It just doesn’t seem reasonable to be concerned that we will somehow run out of sand. After all, the estimated weight of the Earth is 1.3 X 1025 pounds (13 followed by 24 zeros) or 6.5 X 1021 tons. The…

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