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  1. A rapid method for the determination of the approximate composition of minerals and ores. Blowpipe tests are merely qualitative; i.e., they indicate the presence of the different constituents, but not the proportions. A blowpipe consists of a plain brass tube capable of producing a flame of intense heat that may be either oxidizing or reducing. Illuminating gas from a Bunsen burner is the fuel commonly used. The color, nature, and smell of the encrustations suggest the nature of the elements present. See also: bead; borax bead test. Nelson
  2. The use of a bent tube with a condensation trap and a small hole to direct one's concentrated breath into a small flame from a gas or alcohol lamp to produce intense heat in both oxidizing and reducing flames for the purpose of soldering metals or of performing qualitative analyses on powdered mineral samples. See also: oxidizing flame; reducing flame.

Source: Dictionary of Mining, Mineral, and Related Terms

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