University of Wisconsin Digital Collections
Link to University of Wisconsin Digital Collections
Link to University of Wisconsin Digital Collections
Ecology and Natural Resources Collection

Page View

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

Alverson, Larry J.
Rhenium,   pp. 1085-1091 ff. PDF (777.9 KB)


Page 1085

  1085Rhenium 
By Larry J. Alvcrson1 
 Domestic rhenium production decreased but was adequate to meet the more
greatly reduced demand for bimetallic platinumrhenium catalysts, rhenium's
major end use. As a result of decreased demand, there was a decline in the
price of both metal powder and compounds, and an increase in stocks. Substitution
of other metals for 
rhenium in bimetallic catalysts was primarily responsible for the decreased
demand~ The rhenium supply was augmented during the year by the importation
of a significant amount of ammonium perrhenate (NH4ReO4), primarily from
Sweden, the United Kingdom, and West Germany. 
DOMESTIC PRODUCTION 
 Production of rhenium, a secondary byproduct material recovered primarily
from molybdenite (M0S2) associated with southwestern U.S. and Chilean porphyry
copper ores, decreased in 1972 to an estimated 6,100 pounds of rhenium contained
in rhenium salts. Cleveland Refractory Metals (CRM), a subsidiary of Kennecott
Copper Corp., remained the leading rhenium producer in the United States.
The company processed domestic molybdenite concentrates from. operations
of Kennecott and Magma Copper Co., a subsidiary of Newmont Mining Corp.,
as well as concentrates from Chilean sources, at its Garfield, Utah, roasting
facility. 
 During 1972, Continental Rhenium Corp., a wholly owned subsidiary of Continental
Ore Corp., became the nation's fifth rhenium producer, processing MoS2 concentrate
from Arizona, Canada (British Columbia), Chile, and Peru, at the corporation's
Golden, Cob., plant. Preliminary information indicates recoveries in excess
of 95% have been achieved due to the application of a new patented process
(see technology section) for recovering rhenium. 
 Production of rhenium bearing molybdenite from porphyry copper ore continued
at Magma's San Manuel mine in Pinal County, Ariz. M&R Refractory Metals,
Inc., at its Winslow, N.J., plant, produced rhen. iurn salts. from the MoS2
of Magma's San Manuel copper operations for Engeihard Minerals & Chemicals
Corp. on a contractconversion basis. Shattuck Chemical Co., Denver, Coin.,
a division of Engelhard Minerals & Chemicals Corp., recovered rhenium
salts from Arizona molybdenite concentrates. Molybdenum Corp. of America
(Molycorp) recovered rhenium salts from MoS2 concentrate associated with
porphyry copper ores . in Arizona and primary molybdenite from the Questa
molybdenum mine in New Mexico. Molycorp de' Industry economist, Division
of Ferrous Metals. 
Table 1.—Salient rhenium statistics 
(Pounds of contained rhenium) 
1970 
1971 
1972 
Mineproductione                                           
Consumption' .Imports (metal and scrap)                                 
  Imports (ammoniuns perrhenate) e                         Stocks,Dec.31'
5,900 
5,100 
210 
857 
' 6,400 
7,250 
7,600 
377 
8,547 
r9,900 
6,100 
4,300 
168 
1,183 
13,000 
' Estimate. ' Revised. 


Go up to Top of Page