Mineral Facts and Problems: 1960 Edition Page: 24
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MINERAL FACTS AND PROBLEMS, ANNIVERSARY EDITION
ton. Domestic producers are granted a deple-
tion allowance of 23 percent on income from
domestic production and 15 percent on income
from foreign production.
United States duties of 0.25 cent per pound
of alumina used for producing aluminum,
$0.50 per long ton on crude and dried bauxite,
$1 per ton on calcined bauxite used for re-
fractories, and 15 percent ad valorem on cal-
cined bauxite for other uses were suspended
for a 2-year period until July 16, 1960. The
0.25 cent per pound duty on alumina or alu-
minum hydroxide imported for other uses was
Alumina produced in the South Central
United States is transported usually in train-
load lots, to the reduction plants. Freight to
the Pacific Northwest is about $12 a shirt ton.
Alumina is also transported by barge up the
Mississippi River. The free-flowing proper-
ties of dry alumina are utilized when loading
or unloading by hopper, conveyor, or pneu-
Approximately 60 percent of the world
bauxite supply is produced in the tropics. The
aluminum content of most of this ore is trans-
ported considerable distances in the form of
ore, alumina, or metal to the principal mar-
kets in the North Temperate Zone.
Methods of transporting bauxite have been
improved through development of such equip-
ment as 35-ton trucks with heated bottoms to
minimize sticking, aluminum gondolas, and
ships and piers that are designed to make the
greatest possible use of belt conveyors for load-
ing and unloading. New shallow draft ships,
which can navigate the Surinam rivers with a
full load, do not require a stop at Trinidad to
top off the cargo.
During World War II an extensive research
program aimed at developing methods for re-
covering alumina from low-grade ores was
undertaken by the Bureau of Mines. Methods
for upgrading low-grade bauxites (those with
high-silica and/or high-iron content) were in-
vestigated. Acid and alkaline processes for
extracting alumina were tested and the most
promising methods investigated on a pilot-
plant scale. During this period other Govern-
ment and private organizations conducted re-
search on similar processes.
Current Bureau of Mines research includes
a fundamental study of the reactions in the
alkaline sinter process, an evaluation of acid
and alkaline processes to serve as a guide for
further research, and a study of methods for
upgrading Arkansas bauxites and recovering
the alumina from Hawaiian bauxite and
Oregon laterite. Research on mining tech-
niques is underway in Arkansas.
All six companies producing aluminum have
laboratories in which research is in progress
on improving present processes for recovering
alumina or developing methods for recovering
alumina from noncommercial materials. Ana-
conda Aluminum Co. has built a 50-ton-per-
day pilot plant for testing an acid process for
recovering alumina from Idaho clays. North
American Coal Corp. and Strategic Materials
Corp. are investigating, jointly, an acid process
for recovering alumina from low-grade ores
and coal-mine wastes. In addition, studies at
some laboratories are directed toward expand-
ing the use of alumina by the refractory, abra-
sive, petroleum, and other industries.
Forecasts of the annual rate of increase in
domestic alumina consumption range from 6
to 10 percent, or about two to three times the
growth rate of the gross national product in
constant dollars. If the rate of growth is
assumed to be 7 percent per year, consumption
would nearly double every 10 years, and by
1975 alumina consumption would be about 12
million tons a year. This estimate includes
alumina for nonmetal uses, which represent
less than 10 percent of the total. A total of 25
million tons of bauxite would be required to
meet the estimated consumption in 1975.
For the next 5 to 10 years production of
domestic bauxite is expected to remain at about
present levels, and increased requirements will
be met by imports. From the long-term stand-
point the average grade of all ore treated
probably will decrease gradually. The ad-
vantage of using foreign bauxite and shipping
either ore or alumina to the United States will
be lessened as the grade of foreign ore declines.
If transportation costs continue to increase,
the United States companies may build alu-
mina plants at the foreign mines. Some for-
eign companies have found this action desir-
able. The adjustment of taxes and royalties
by foreign governments holding bauxite de-
posits may be another factor in determining
whether future alumina plants will be built
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United States. Bureau of Mines. Mineral Facts and Problems: 1960 Edition, report, 1960; Washington D.C.. (digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc38790/m1/32/: accessed May 27, 2017), University of North Texas Libraries, Digital Library, digital.library.unt.edu; crediting UNT Libraries Government Documents Department.