A term applied to inorganic substances such as rocks and similar matter found in the earth strata, as opposed to organic substances such as plant and animal matter. Minerals normally have definite chemical composition and crystal structure. The term is also applied to matter derived from minerals, such as the inorganic ions found in water. The term has been applied to ion exchangers, stemming from the early use of natural zeolite. The term is inappropriate to the modern organic ion exchange resins.

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