As with other industrial minerals mentioned here, the term potassium salts applies to a large group of compounds, rather than one single compound. Potassium chloride, sulfate, and nitrate are only three of the most common potassium salts used in industry. The first of these, known as sylvite, can be obtained from salt water or from fossil salt beds. It makes up roughly 1% of each deposit, the remainder of the deposit being sodium chloride (halite).
Potassium salts are similar to phosphate rocks in that their primary use is in agriculture, where they are made into fertilizers, and in the chemical industry, where they are converted into other compounds of potassium. Some compounds of potassium have particularly interesting uses. Potassium nitrate, for example, is unstable and is used in the manufacture of explosives, fireworks, and matches.
Science EncyclopediaScience & Philosophy: Incomplete dominance to IntuitionismIndustrial Minerals - Asbestos, Barite, Boron Compounds, Corundum, Fluorspar, Phosphates, Potassium Salts, Sodium Chloride - Feldspar