Copper has become a fashionable material. Products in copper are part of many design collections, in many cases for commercial purposes. It has become a one-dimensional material, that is often applied as a skin that sells the product. However, there is much more to say about this intriguing material than that it is simply beautiful. The world’s hunger for copper is ever increasing. Huge amounts of ore have to be taken from the earth’s crust to supply industries with enough copper. Probably without knowing, everyone contributes to this when making a phone call, driving a car, or simply switching on the light. It has become an indispensable material in people's daily lives.
The mines that are the source of the ore are very intriguing. Their immense scale, relief patterns, and the colors of the ore and rocks are often very beautiful. However, at the same time, these mines are scars in the landscape, made by immense machines and the brute force of explosives.
To further show the scale of the intriguing open pit mines, a 3D model of a copper mine in Chile has been made. The digital model was made from the satellite images, then 3D printed and used to make a sand mold. In the sand mold, bronze (90% copper/10% tin) has been cast. After unmolding the bronze piece, the casting channels are removed, and the edge sanded and polished.