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Information @ a Glance

Introduction

  • Bauxite is the most important aluminium ore.
  • Bauxite is reddish-brown, white, tan, and tan-yellow.
  • They were formed by lateritization (see laterite) of various silicate rocks such as granite, gneiss, basalt, syenite and shale.
  • Bauxite is the name for a mixture of similar minerals that contain hydrated aluminum oxides.
  • Bauxite is a naturally occurring, heterogeneous ore composed chiefly of aluminous oxide minerals as gibbsite (Al2O3.3H2O), the trihydrate, bohemite, diaspore (Al2O3.H2O) and monohydrates etc.

Technology

  •  The major technological barriers to improving the Bayer process are the inability to significantly increase the rate of alumina precipitation, the inability to increase thermal efficiency, the need for higher temperature and pressure digestion, and a relatively low yield.
  • ResonantSonics technology has the potential to yield improvements in several of the Bayer processing steps.
  • M2M-Technology is a novel, patented combination of well known process and equipment technology. Implementation of an M2M facility typically reduces specific residue generation by 8% and increases alumina production by 4%.

Processing

  • Bauxite is typically mined in open-pits and either processed into alumina near the mining operation, or shipped to smelting markets around the world for processing.
  • Eighty percent of world bauxite production, mainly from large blanket type deposits is from surface mines, with the rest, mainly from Southern Europe and Hungary, from underground excavations.
  • The typical processing of Guyanese bauxite is straightforward: Bauxite is crushed to -9 cm, washed and screened, crushed to -4 cm, rewashed, then rotary kiln calcined, with some final de-ironing before shipment.

Market

  • There is a large U.S. market for bauxite processing.
  • Bauxite production has increased annually since 1998 at an average rate of almost 6%py.
  • Demand for non-metallurgical grades of bauxite and alumina is growing less quickly than smelter grade material for aluminium production.
  • Europe, the second largest market, is projected to register sales of 52 million metric tons by 2010.

Uses

  • It is used in the production of synthetic corundum and aluminous refractories.
  • Bauxite is widely used in the manufacture of refractory bricks, which are utilized as lining materials in furnaces and kilns.
  • Bauxite is used in the manufacture of alum, aluminous sulphates and other chemicals.
  • Refractory-grade bauxite also is used to produce brown-fused alumina, a significant product in China.

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