The principal ores of copper are the oxides cuprite and melaconite, the carbonates malachite and chessylite, the basic chloride atacamite, the silicate chrysocolla, the sulphides chalcocite, chalcopyrite, erubescite and tetrahedrite.
Melaconite was formerly largely worked in the Lake Superior region, and is abundant in some of the mines of Tennessee and the Mississippi valley.
Cupric oxide, CuO, occurs in nature as the mineral melaconite (q.v.), and can be obtained as a hygroscopic black powder by the gentle ignition of copper nitrate, carbonate or hydroxide; also by heating the hydroxide.
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