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

Merwin, Roland W.
Sulfur and pyrites,   pp. 1175-1190 PDF (1.7 MB)


Page 1176

I I7~ MINERALS YEARBOOK, 1972' Revised.' Hydrogen sulfide and liquid sulfur
dioxide. 
DOMESTIC PRODUCTION 
Native Su1fur~—Native sulfur accounted 
for 72% of the domestic production of sulfur in all forms. All of it was
produced from Frasch mines in Texas and Louisiana. No sulfur ore production
was reported during the year. 
In 1972, 13 Frasch mines produced sulfur; one of these was closed during
the year. The producers and mines in Louisiana were Freeport Minerals Co.
at Garden Island Bay, Grand Isle, Grand Ecaille, and Lake Pelto; Jefferson
Lake Sulphur Co. at Lake Hermitage (closed in March); and Texas Gulf, Inc.,
at Bully Camp. The producers and mines in Texas were Atlantic Richfield Co.
at Fort Stockton; Duval Corp. at Pecos; Jefferson Lake Sulphur Co. at Long
Point Dome; and Texas Gulf, Inc., at Boling Dome, Fannett Dome, Moss Bluff
Dome, and Spindletop -Dome. 
Production of domestic Frasch sulfur increased in 1972, being 4% more than
that of 1971 and only 2% lower than the alltime peak production in 1968.
This was a reflection of a substantial increase in the demand for sulfur
in both domestic and foreign markets. 
 There was a continuing tendency to concentrate production in the larger
low-cost mines to counteract the adverse effects of low sulfur prices. During
1969, nine producers operated 21 mines, By yearend 1972, this was reduced
to five producers operating 12 mines. Based on the normal production rates
prior to closing, these nine closures (two in 1969, five in 1970, one in
1971, and one in 1972) represented an ap 
parent reduction in production potential of slightly more than 1 million
tons per year. 
The 12 mines remaining in operation at the end of 1972 increased their production
over that of 1969 by 1,013,000 tons, or 16%, and over that of 1971 by 369,000
tons, or 5%. Seven of the mines showed increases in production rates over
those during 1971, and the other five registered decreases. The five largest
mines, with pro. duction rates in excess of 1/2 million tons per year each,
accounted for 73% of the total Frasch sulfur output for the year. Four medium-size
mines, with production rates of more than 250,000 tons per year each, contributed
an additional 19% of the year's production. The remaining 8% of the output
came from four smaller mines, one of which closed during the year. 
Ten mines, operated by the Duval Corp., Freeport Minerals Co., and Texas
Gulf, Inc., accounted -for most of the production. Only a relatively small
portion of the output was obtained from the other two pro. ducers, operating
three mines. By yearend, this was reduced to two companies with one mine
each. 
Producers' shipments of Frasch sulfur increased by 13% over those in 1971
as a re~ sult of improved demand for domestic consumption and export. The
shipments exceed production by 323,000 tons, or 4%, with the shortage being
met by withdrawals from producers' stocks. Approximately 76% of the shipments
were for domestic consumption and 24% ' for export. 
Table 2.—Production of sulfur and sulfur-containing raw materials 
by producers in the United States 
(Thousand long tons) 
19 
Gross weight 
69 
Sulfur content 
19 
Gross weight 
70 
Sulfur content 
19 
Gross 
weight 
71 
Sulfur content 
19 
Gross weight 
72 
Sulfur content 
Fraschsulfur                 
Recovered elemental sulfur        
Byproduct sulfuric acid (basis 100%) produced at Cu, Zn, and Pb plants  
Pyrites                    Other forms'                 
Total                  
7,146 
1,422 
1,583 
821 
' 149 
7,146 
' 1,422 
517 
334 
r126 
7,082 
1,457 
1,642 
845 
' 161 
7,082 
' 1,457 
537 
339 
r142 
7,025 
1,595 
1,585 
808 
' 149 
7,025 
' 1,595 
518 
316 
' 126 
7,290 
1,928 
1,669 
741 
173 
7,290 
1,928 
546 
283 
149 
r9,545 
r9,557 
' 9,580 
10,196 


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