Mineral Facts and Problems: 1960 Edition Page: 25
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ALUMINA AND BAUXITE
near bauxite deposits in foreign countries or in
the United States to utilize low-grade domes-
The worldwide search for alumina resources
in recent years has uncovered large deposits in
Australia and Guinea. This search will con-
tinue and probably result in the development
of additional reserves. In the United States
intensive prospecting and geological study may
uncover ore in Alaska, in the Appalachian
Valley, or along the Midway-Wilcox uncon-
formity, but the chances for discovery of large
quantities of high-grade bauxite do not appear
to be good. However, extensions of the low-
grade deposits, especially the Oregon and
Hawaiian laterite or the Arkansas bauxitic
clay, probably will be found.
Most bauxite will continue to be mined by
open-pit methods, and greater emphasis will
be placed on the restoration of mined-over
areas. Mining of other aluminous materials is
expected to use similar methods.
Assurance of an adequate and dependable
long-range alumina supply requires the dis-
covery of new sources and the solution of min-
ing and metallurgical problems.
The development of a commercial process
for producing alumina from domestic low-
grade aluminous materials is a challenging
technologic problem. Some of the problems
include: (1) The solubility of iron in acid
solutions; (2) the solubility of silica in alka-
line solutions; (3) gelation of alkaline slur-
ries; (4) lack of stability of alkaline alumina
solutions; (5) the need for low-cost acid-re-
sistant materials of construction; and (6) the
refractory nature of aluminous minerals.
In the Bayer process for producing alumina
there are the continuing problems of reducing
raw-material, transportation, and other operat-
ing costs; increasing the efficiency of the opera-
tion; and developing byproducts.
The major deterrent to the mechanical ben-
eficiation of low-grade bauxites to obtain con-
centrate suitable for further treatment is the
high loss of alumina associated with removal
of the iron and silica. Difficulties are also
encountered in the mechanical beneficiation of
relatively high grade bauxites for special uses,
such as alum or abrasive production.
Exploration for bauxite is handicapped by
inadequate knowledge of the geological proc-
esses leading to the formation of deposits and
by a lack of a rapid method of analysis for
alumina. Large losses occur in the mining of
bauxite from deposits surrounded by incom-
petent rock. Large-scale, open-pit operations
are faced with growing demands for surface
1. AMERICAN INSTITUTE OF MINING AND METALLURGI-
CAL ENGINEERS. Problems of Clay and Laterite
Genesis. 1952, 244 pp.
2. BLUE, D. D. Raw Materials for Aluminum Pro-
duction. Bureau of Mines Inf. Circ. 7675, 1954,
3. BUREAU OF MINES (in cooperation with the Geo-
logical Survey). Materials Survey--Bauxite.
1953, 309 pp.
4. CALHOUN, W. A., AND POWELL, H. E., JR. Investi-
gation of Low-Grade Bauxites as Potential
Sources of Aluminum by Caustic Desilication
and Alumina Extraction. Bureau of Mines Rept.
of Investigation 5042, 1954, 23 pp.
5. . Laboratory Investigation of Bauxite Ore
from the Quapaw Deposit, Saline County, Ark.
Bureau of Mines Rept. of Investigations 5366,
1957, 11 pp.
6. CONLEY, J. E., AND OTHERS. Production of Metal-
lurgical Alumina from Pennsylvania Nodular
Diaspore Clays, Bureau of Mines Bull. 465,
1947, 193 pp.
7. CORCORAN, R. E., AND LmnBY, F. W. Ferruginous
Bauxite Deposits in the Salem Hills, Marion
County, Oreg. Dept. of Geol. and Miner. Ind.,
State of Oregon BulL 46, 1956, 53 pp.
8. CSERVENYAK, F. J. Recovery of Alumina from
Kaolin by the Lime-Soda Sinter Process. Bu-
reau of Mines Rept. of Investigations 4069, 1947,
9. CSERVENYAK, F. J., RUPPERT, JOHN, AND GAREN,
D. E. Extraction of Alumina from High-Iron
Bauxites, Pilot-Plant Tests Employing the Lime-
Soda Sinter Process. Bureau of Mines Rept. of
Investigations 4299, 1948, 29 pp.
10. EDWARDS, J. D., FRARY, F. C., AND JEFFRIES, ZAY.
The Aluminum Industry, Aluminum and Its
Production. Chem. Eng. Series, 1930, 358 pp.
11. ENGINEERING AND MINING JOURNAL. Haitian Baux-
ite From Mine to Ship. Vol. 158, No. 9, Sep-
tember 1947, pp. 93-96; Mining in Jamaica
Means More and More Bauxite, p. 97; Reynolds
Jamaica-Still Growing, p. 98; Kaiser Opera-
tions in Jamaica, p. 99; Alumina Jamaica-The
Plant That Wouldn't Stop Growing, pp. 100-105.
12. FIRST BOSTON CORPORATION. Aluminum, the 1"h-
dustry and the Four North American Producers.
1951, 79 pp.
13. GORDON, MACKENZIE, JR., TRACEY, JOSHUA I., JR.,
AND ELLIS, MILLER W. Geology of the Arkan-
sas Bauxite Region. Geol. Survey Prof. Paper
299, 1958, 268 pp.
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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/m1/33/: accessed May 23, 2017), University of North Texas Libraries, Digital Library, digital.library.unt.edu; crediting UNT Libraries Government Documents Department.