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Bureau of Mines / Minerals yearbook metals, minerals, and fuels 1972
Year 1972, Volume 1 (1972)

Fulkerson, Frank B.
Vermiculite,   pp. 1295-1298 PDF (351.5 KB)


Page 1295

  -1295Vermiculite 
By Frank B. Fulkerson' 
 Crude vermiculite production increased 12% in 1972. The vermiculite was
shipped from Montana and South Carolina mines to processing plants in 31
States for exfoliation. Apparent consumption of exfoliated vermiculite increased
18%. The exfoliated 
material was used mainly as lightweight concrete aggregate, as loose fill
insulation, and in horticulture. Output of crude vermiculite in the Republic
of South Africa, the only other significant world producer, advanced 12%.
- 
Table 1.—Salient vermiculite statistics 
1968 
1969 
1970 
1971 
1972 
United States: 
Sold and used by producers: 
 Crude thousand short tons 
290 
310 
285 
301 
337 
 Value thousand doflars 
 Average value per ton - 
Exfoliated thousand short tons 
$5,684 
$19.60 
213 
$6,805 
$21.95 
250 
$6,501 
$22.81 
221 
$7,198 
$23.91 
209 
$8,092 
$24.01 
247 
 Value thousand dollars - 
 Average value per ton            World: Production, crude_ - - thousand
short tons - 
$16,845 
$79.08 
 421 
$19,916 
$79.66 
 466 
$18,809 
$85.11 
 431 
$20,885 
$99.93 
 459 
$24,777 
$100.31 
 512 
DOMESTIC PRODUCTION 
 Crude Vermiculite-—The quantity of crude vermiculite sold or -used
by producers increased from 301,000 tons in 1971 to 337,000 tons in 1972.
The principal produ-cer was the Construction Products Division, W. R. Grace
& Co., which operated mines near Libby, Mont., and Enoree, S.C. The only
other producer was Patterson Vermiculite Co., Lanford, S.C. 
 W. R. Grace & Co., continued construction on a $7 million, 1,000-ton-per-day
wet-processing plant near Libby. The new facility, scheduled to be completed
in 
mid-1973, was being equipped -to process finer sized ores. 
 Exfoliated Vermiculite—The tonnage of exfoliated vermiculite sold
or used by producers in-creased -from 209,000 in 1971 to 247,000 in 1972.
The -lightweight material was produced at 50 plants in 31 States. Leading
producer was W. R. Grace & Co., which operated 26 plants in 22 States.
Leading States were California, Florida, New Jersey, South Carolina, and
Texas. About 42% of the exfoliated vermiculite was produced in the five States.
CONSUMPTION AND USES 
 Lightweight concrete aggregate, loose fill insulation, and horticulture
were the principal markets for exfoliated vermiculite. The quantity used
as -lightweight concrete aggregate increased from 74,400 tons in 1971 to
80,000 tons in 1972, and the quantity consumed as loose fill insulation ad-
vanced from 71,200 tons to 74,000 tons. The tonnage consumed in horticulture
increased from 28,000 to 40,000. 
By main categories, the end-use pattern was as follows: Aggregates (concrete,
plas1 Industry economist, Division of Nonmetallic 
Minerals. 


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