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The conversion of rocky ore into finished metal products involves a variety of activities. After the ore has been mined and the metals extracted from it, the metals need to be further refined into purer forms and fashioned into usable shapes, such as rolls, slabs, ingots, or tubing. Throughout these processes technicians carry out laboratory and on-site testing to ensure proper production flow and to monitor the equipment's condition and the product's quality. Other technicians work in laboratories to test and develop new alloys, methods, or equipment to produce existing products. In the metallurgy industry, these activities fall into three areas—production, quality control, and research and development.