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Bureau of Mines / Minerals yearbook 1990
Year 1990, Volume 2 (1990)

West, Wanda J.; Gere, Milton A., Jr.
Michigan,   pp. [254]-269 PDF (2.4 MB)


Page 258

258  MICHIGAN—1990. facility will house undergraduate and graduate
academic and research programs in metallurgy, materials processing, and mining,
as well as the Institute of Materials Processing. Multifaceted research in
those program areas was conducted in 1990. The Mineral Technology Research
Group completed a study on ways to improve the vitality of Michigan's limestone
industry. Study areas included: (1) applied research on new technologies
to identify new uses for limestone, (2) seeking ways to broaden markets and
develop new markets for limestone and limestone products, and (3) investigating
ways to lower costs associated with the production, processing, and transportation
of limestone and limestone products. A report of research findings was published
in February.6 
 MTU's Department of Mining Engineering personnel, in cooperation with the
GSD, continued research on economic development of the graphitic rock resources
of the western Upper Peninsula. Earlier research had established that the
rock had the proper chemical and physical characteristics to be used as kiln
feed material, substituting for shale, in portland cement manufacture. Several
cement companies were interested in these findings, and 
~ additional work was done on exploration 
~ for reserves, including core drilling and 
~ a transportation cost assessment. Higher than desired pyrite levels in
some of the slate rock led to research on ways to remove the sulfur. Crushing-screening
and bioextraction methods were being investigated. 
 A multiyear geologic mapping project of the Ishpeming greenstone belt, which
has a potential for gold deposits, was completed by MTU's Department of Geological
Engineering, Geology, and Geophysics. The area is a few miles north of the
inactive Ropes gold mine and several gold prospects that were explored years
ago. Funding was provided by the GSD (which published two related reports
in 1990) and the U.S. Geological Survey. 
 In fiscal year 1990, MTU received research and allotment grants totaling
$338,697 from the U. S. Bureau of Mines 
under provisions of Public Laws 98-409 and 100-483, the State Mining and
Mineral Resources Research Institute Program. The basic allotment grant of
$145,000 was supplemented by additional funds for respirable dust research.
Funds provided under the act support basic research in the mineral sciences
and engineering, and they are matched by State funds on a 2: 1 basis. Since
designated a participant in the Mineral InstituteProgram in 1979, Michigan
Tech has received more than $3 million in Federal funds through provisions
of the program. 
FUELS 
 According to the U.S. Department of Energy, Michigan ranked 15th in crude
oil production and in natural gas production in 1990. The State produced
19,675,000 barrels of oil (42 gallons ~ each) and 139,955 million cubic feet
of gas. 
REVIEW BY NONFUEL 
MINERAL COMMODITIES 
Industrial Minerals 
Cakiuin Qiloiide.—Michigan again led the Nation in calcium chloride
production, outranking California, the only other producing State, by a considerable
margin. Dow Chemical Co. produced calcium chloride pellets and flake at its
well brine operation near Ludington in Mason County, and Wilkinson Chemical
Corp. sold calcium chloride solution from its operation near Mayville in
Lapeer County. Output and value declined slightly from 1989 levels. Calcium
chloride was used for melting snow and ice from streets and highways, for
dust control, road base stabilization, thawing coal and other bulk materials,
concrete set acceleration, and other miscellaneous uses. 
Martin Marietta Corp., Magnesia Specialties Div. , marketed some byproduct
calcium chloride from its brine operations in Manistee County. 
 Cement.—Portland and masonry cement sales rose about 8 % and 7
% ,
respectively, over those of 1989 and were the highest since 1979. Michigan
ranked third among the 38 States producing portland cement and fourth among
the 36 masonry-cement-producing States. The value of portland cement increased
4 % to a record $263.6 million. Among the nonfuel minerals produced in Michigan
in 1990, only iron ore contributed more to the total State value of mineral
production. The average price of Michigan's portland cement was $44.64 per
ton ($1.85 less than that in 1989) compared with the U.S. average of $48.72.
Masonry cement sales averaged 
$87.82 per ton ($0.32 more than that in 
1989), considerably higher than the national average of $68.84. 
 Michigan's five cement plants operated at 93 % of their 6.1-million-short-ton
fmish grinding capacity compared with an 86 % utilization rate in 1989. The
plants operated at almost 99 % of their clinker capacity. Lafarge Corp. and
Medusa Cement Co. operated dry-process plants; Holnam Inc. and St. Mary's
Peerless Cement Co. operated wet-process plants; and Essroc Materials Inc.
(formerly known as Aetna Cement Corp.) operated a grinding plant only. Gray
portland cement was produced at each of the plants. Holnam was the only company
not producing masonry cement; however, the company was the only producer
of portland pozzolan cement. About 75 % of the portland cement sales were
to readymixed concrete companies; other customers included concrete product
manufacturers (1 1 %), highway contractors (9 %), building material dealers
(4 %), and other miscellaneous customers. Most of the cement was trucked
in bulk form to consumers. 
 Raw materials consumed in the manufacturing process included 7.1 million
short tons of limestone, 1.6 million short tons of clay and shale, 669,000
short tons of clinker, 295,000 short tons of gypsum, and smaller amounts
of anhydrite, fly ash, iron ore, sand, and slag. 
 Cement shipments to and within Michigan from all domestic sources 


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