col·​tan | \ ˈkōl-ˌtan How to pronounce coltan (audio) \

Definition of coltan

: a dull black ore that consists of a mixture of columbite and tantalite and is a minor source of tantalum

Examples of coltan in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web

Congo produces some two-thirds of the world’s cobalt, a mineral used in the production of lithium-ion batteries that power laptops and electric cars, and coltan, copper, tantalum and tin, all used in modern electronics. Nicholas Bariyo, WSJ, "Congo Keeps Voters in the Dark About Election Results," 2 Jan. 2019 Photo: Associated Press Congo produces some two-thirds of the world’s supply of cobalt, which is key to the manufacturing of lithium-ion batteries, along with minerals such as copper, tin and coltan used in cellphones, laptops and electric cars. Gabriele Steinhauser, WSJ, "Congo Postpones Vote to Elect Successor to Kabila by a Week," 20 Dec. 2018 There is also active mining in the region for diamonds and coltan, a metallic ore that yields the rare-earth element tantalum used in cellphones. Kejal Vyas |, WSJ, "Desperate Venezuelans Dig Up Paradise in Search of Gold," 20 Nov. 2018 The war was the beginning of a series of conflicts that swept the verdant hills of eastern Congo, a region rich with minerals such as gold, tin and coltan. Gabriele Steinhauser, WSJ, "Nobel Peace Prize Awarded to Anti-Sexual Violence Campaigners," 5 Oct. 2018 The Western lowland gorilla's native habitat in Africa is shrinking due in part to mining of a metallic ore called coltan, a key ingredient in manufacturing batteries, including the kind found in our phones. Jennifer Larino,, "Meet Audubon Zoo's new Western lowland gorilla troop," 1 Mar. 2018 Race organizers ask for these donations because recycling cell phones reduces the need for additional coltan, a mineral extracted from the forests of Congo, home to endangered lowland gorillas. Chris Barlow, Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, "With a new year upon us, try these 7 interesting and new workout options in Milwaukee area," 3 Jan. 2018 Wakanda’s entire Vibranium economy is based on Congo’s exclusive rights to the rare mineral coltan (which is in basically EVERY cellphone). Jason Johnson, The Root, "Hey, Dude: Black Panther Wasn’t Filmed in Africa, Just Like Star Wars Wasn’t Filmed in Space," 22 Jan. 2018 The eastern region has rich deposits of minerals including tin, gold and coltan., "Kabila Crisis Fuels Conflict in Eastern Congo as UN Targeted," 20 Dec. 2017

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'coltan.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

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First Known Use of coltan

1999, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for coltan

International Scientific Vocabulary columbo-tantalite, from columbite + -o- + tantalite

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Statistics for coltan

Last Updated

26 Jan 2019

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Time Traveler for coltan

The first known use of coltan was in 1999

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to corrupt or become corrupted

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