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What is Heavy Industry?

Heavy industry is the set of activities of extraction and primary transformation of the material, such as mining in which minerals used in the steel industry, oil industry and the manufacture of the necessary machinery, among others.

The nineteenth century is notable for the great advance that occurred with respect to the industry. Its growth was due to the use of iron as a material of use, later replaced by steel, which is an alloy that combines iron with carbon and other elements.

The countries producing heavy industry had great advantages and ended up exporting their products and techniques to practically the entire world. Since then, until the consolidation of technology and information technology, having a heavy industry potential meant being at the forefront of the world economy.

The main heavy industries on the planet belong to the most developed nations on the planet, such as the United States, the United Kingdom, China, Japan and Russia, along with emerging nations such as Brazil.

Heavy industry can be classified into:

  • Mining or extractive industries. They obtain raw materials directly from the environment, generally from the subsoil.
  • Cement companies.  They produce rock sediments and other minerals, as well as mixtures of them.
  • Steelworks. They process non-ferrous metals and minerals to create alloys.
  • Chemical industries. They produce and process chemical substances using controlled techniques.
Heavy industry is one of the main economic activities of the world economy in modern times, and it has been a central factor in the humanity’s technological development.

Some examples of the use of heavy industry we see in the manufacture of airplanes, ships, railways, maritime platforms, mining machinery, satellites and spaceships.