Extraction of metals and reduction


  • Unreactive metals such as gold are found in the Earth as the metal itself but most metals are found as compounds that require chemical reactions to extract the metal.

Metals less reactive than carbon can be extracted from their oxides by reduction with carbon.

Reduction involves the loss of oxygen.

Knowledge and understanding are limited to the reduction of oxides using carbon.

Knowledge of the details of processes used in the extraction of metals is not required.

Students should be able to:

  • interpret or evaluate specific metal extraction processes when given appropriate information
  • identify the substances which are oxidised or reduced in terms of gain or loss of oxygen.