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)
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.
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