Tuesday, August 19, 2014

Forecast for Primary Aluminium Production in the World

Hi Friends,

After a long time, I have appeared before you to discuss about region-wise projected production capacity of primary aluminium in the World. These data are purely based on information available on public domain. 

During last couple of years, the aluminium market was little sluggish which forced many aluminium producers to cut down the production figures / operate at break even level / even a few Smelters were kept shutdown. It's a well known fact that aluminium price always follows a periodic sinusoidal curves. Majority of people involved in aluminium business are well aware of the facts and habituated to face the challenges in such situation. If we look at the present price trend, the LME price for aluminium has taken upward trend and is hovering at around US$ 2000 per tonne of aluminium. 

In this post, we thought of sharing forecast for primary aluminium production across the globe as tabulated below:

The world aluminium production figure projected for 2017 clearly indicates the compound annual growth rate (CAGR) figure of around 5.9% taking actual production of aluminium for 2013 as the base figure. The project CAGR of 5.9% is a promising figure compared to past CAGR figure of around 3% for previous decades.The tabulated figures have been assimilated from various published literature,  international journals, balance sheets of companies and some data directly collected through interaction with the experts of aluminium field across the globe. These data are authentic and reliable and have been published here in the interest of friends of aluminium fraternity as a piece of information. However, these data may be cross-checked before taking any financial decisions.

The author of this article will be pleased to have additional data / information from experts or any  individual related to the subject.

We will welcome your comments / remarks.

Kunwar Rajendra

Monday, June 2, 2014


Hi Friends,

As discussed in previous articles, about 89% of alumina produced in the World is used for manufacture of aluminium metal and remaining 11% for production of chemicals and other non-metallurgical applications. Thus calcined alumina as well as hydrated alumina (Hydrate) is broadly characterized in two categories-
  •       Metallurgical grade alumina or Smelter grade alumina (MGA or SGA)) and
  •       Non-metallurgical grade alumina or Chemical grade alumina (NMGA or CGA).
Though the volume of CGA market is less compared to that of SGA but the profit margin in CGA is much higher as its selling price ranges from 2 to 5 times of that of SGA. Presently, the market potential of CGA across the globe is estimated at around 5.8 to 6.0 million tonnes per annum. Out of total CGA demand in International market, specialty grade hydrates have market share of over 50% i.e. about 3.0 to 3.2 Mtpa being used as feed stock for manufacture of Aluminium sulphate, Fire retardant fillers, Tooth paste, Sealing rings for rotating equipment, Thread guides, Polish, Paints, Ceramics, Abrasive, High temperature refractory and American diamond. During last couple of years, selling price of CGA has shown increasing trend along with increase in its demand whereas selling price of SGA has shown downward trend hovering at the level of US$ 350-360 per tonne of calcined alumina because of lower LME price of aluminium metal. Now, let me give the brief account of bauxite reserves and alumina scenario with more focus on salient features of Alumina projects in Indonesia in subsequent paragraphs.

As per data available on public domain, bauxite is available in Tayan, Munggu Pasir, Mempawah and West Kalimantan region in Indonesia. West Kalimantan is having total bauxite reserves of over 2000 million tonnes with proven reserves of over 800 million tonnes of bauxite. The bauxite is predominantly gibbsitic in nature with average quality of about 43% total alumina, about 38.6% available alumina and around 3% reactive silica. The bauxite in Indonesia has been seen in low lying hills with overburden varying from 0.60 m to 3.8 m and nodular bauxite horizon from 2.2 to 5.2 m. The geographical studies indicate that these bauxite deposits were formed by in-situ weathering. Till last year, the country was exporting bauxite to china and other countries but in the recent past, the Indonesian government has totally banned the export of bauxite and putting more focus on processing of bauxite for production of value added products.

In Indonesia, there are two major Alumina projects in West Kalimantan namely Tayan Alumina Project and Mempawah Alumina Project under execution and active consideration as outlined here under.

Tayan CGA Project: Tayan bauxite mine commenced its operation in early 2010 and was exporting bauxite to China and Japan. Construction of Tayan Alumina Project was started in April 2011 aiming to mechanical completion schedule in December 2013 and trial production in January 2014. The capacity of this plant is 0.300 million tonnes for production of wide varieties of Chemical grade hydrates and aluminas. The estimated project cost is US$ 490 million with the technology supplied by Showadenko (SDK), Japan. The actual mechanical completion of this project is expected by end of December 2014 and commercial production by March 2015.

Mempawah SGA Project: The capacity of this plant is 1.2 million tonnes of SGA to be supplied as feed stock to Aluminium Smelter. The estimated capital investment will be about US$ 1.5 billion. The construction of this plant will be started by early 2015 with mechanical completion target of December 2017.

Both Alumina projects have promising future because of locational advantages, availability of good bauxite reserves, adequate coal reserves and adoption of advanced technology. I wish grand success of both projects.

We seek your valued comments / opinions / additional information, if any.

Kunwar Rajendra

Wednesday, April 2, 2014

Is Low Silica in Bauxite a Problem in Bayer Alumina Plant ?

Hi Friends,

After a long gap, I have appeared before you to interact on a small but very critical process issue of Bayer Alumina Plant.

In the past, we have always discussed about the negative impact of high silica in bauxite specifically with regard to operational problems, process control issues, higher consumption of input materials and deterioration in quality of product hydrate or alumina. In previous articles, this issue was elaborated at length with measureable / quantifiable approach so as to focus on its importance in Bayer Alumina Refineries.

In present post, we will briefly discuss about the advantages and disadvantages of low silica in processing bauxite for production of calcined alumina.  The question mark (?) on the subject itself forces us to think and re-think about the positive and negative aspects of low silica in bauxite.

It’s a well-known fact that all Alumina producers wish to have low silica bauxite for obvious reasons discussed earlier. Now, before coming to the subject directly, following questions arise-
(i)  What type of silica is harmful for Bayer’s process?
(ii) What should be the cut-off silica content in bauxite for acceptable quality of alumina?

Though we have discussed   these issues in several articles, still it is prudent to freshen up with salient features as outlined below-

We are well aware that predominantly there are two types of silica in bauxite designated with regard to Bayer process of alumina (a) Non-reactive silica and (b) Reactive silica. ROM bauxite mined adopting either open cast or underground mining methodology contains a number of metallic oxides including silica. This mined silica as percentage of total dry bauxite is termed as total silica. The part of total silica which reacts with caustic soda and forms sodalite complex through sodium silicate route is termed as Reactive silica. Majority of Reactive silica is found in form of Kaolinite. And thus, the non-reacting component of total silica with caustic soda is popularly known as Non-reactive silica. Quartz is non-reactive silica. The silica being abrasive in nature causes erosion in components of various process equipment like heat exchangers, pipelines, valves, pump casing and impellers etc. Thus higher silica content affects the capital investment of Alumina refinery because robust material of construction for equipment component in contact with bauxite slurry. Hence higher silica in bauxite causes higher initial investment for the plant and higher repair maintenance cost for routine replacement of critical components of equipment.

Generally, it has been seen from bauxite analysis that Reactive silica in bauxite ranges from 50% to 80% out of Total silica in bauxite. Plant operation is affected because of high silica in bauxite as it has high settling velocity and abnormally high abrasive nature.

Now coming to the topic with raised question mark, it’s true that low reactive silica in bauxite is considered as a serious process problem as it directly affects the quality of product alumina because of higher silica content in alumina. The SiO2 content in calcined alumina produced in all modern alumina a refinery is controlled at around 0.015%. The alumina having higher silica content is considered as inferior quality. For achieving 0.015% SiO2 in alumina, the SiO2 in aluminate liquor feeding to crystallizers / precipitators should be around 0.45 gpl.  The ineffective desilication because of delay in achieving super-saturation of silica across desilicators, gpl SiO2 in liquor increases to much higher level which ultimately deteriorates the product alumina quality.

The above elaboration concludes that moderate level of Reactive silica in bauxite at around 1.5% in bauxite is considered to be the best with regard to plant efficiencies and product quality as well.

Trust, the subject has been covered here to your desired level of satisfaction in understanding the criticality of the subject issue. We would welcome your  valued comments / remarks to further substantiate the subject.

Kunwar Rajendra

Wednesday, February 19, 2014

Right time to go ahead with Alumina – Aluminium Projects

Hi Friends,

I wish to discuss my personal opinion in brief on present market scenario and future prospects of alumina and aluminium projects in subsequent paragraphs.

These days aluminium price at London Metal Exchange (LME) is hovering at around US$ 1700 per tonne of metal. The figure is highly frustrating for those who are operating the alumina – aluminium plants across the globe as it has reduced the operating profits of respective companies to almost lowest level and in some cases it has dipped the profitability to unbearable negative side forcing the closure of many plants in the World. This scenario will not continue for longer duration as drop down in inventory level will force the upward turn to increase the demand vis-à-vis price of alumina and aluminium as well.

The data analysis and past trends clearly reveal that the aluminium metal price always follows the sinusoidal curve and the present level is very close to the lowest point of the trajectory. Thus the downward trend in LME price of this glittering metal is expected to continue for a maximum duration of about two years from now and will start moving upward thereafter in reverse direction from present trend.

In my personal opinion, it is the right time for the investors and promoters to take advantage of the available time period for fetching appreciable return on investments by putting up alumina and aluminium project in the close proximity of bauxite source in any country across the globe preferably in India, Vietnam and Indonesia. The total execution time for economically viable plant will be around three years from statutory clearances and financial decision which ever is later. Therefore, if the decision is taken right now, the payback period for such prestigious plant will be around 5 to 7 years with IRR of around 15% on capital investment.

Kunwar Rajendra

Wednesday, August 21, 2013

Bauxite : A Major Concern for Chinese Alumina Refineries

Hi Friends,

All of us are well aware that China has added the Alumina refinery capacities at faster pace during last decade though they have the limitation of quality bauxite for processing at economic level. Chinese bauxite is poor in quality as it has diasporic alumina coupled with very high reactive silica.

It will be prudent to mention here that diasporic alumina extraction is highly energy intensive and high reactive silica in bauxite causes higher Caustic soda consumption for alumina production. Also, the mining cost of bauxite in China is comparatively higher compared to other countries. Thus, imported bauxite from neighboring countries is mixed with locally mined bauxite before processing in plants. Following details will make the elaboration easy for understanding. 

Current production cost of calcined alumina in China is ranging from US$320 to US$380 per tonne of calcined alumina. The broad break up of cost components are outlined below-
  • Bauxite : US$90 to US$170 per tonne of alumina
  • Caustic : US$50 to US$60 per tonne of alumina
  • Energy  : US$140 to US$180 per tonne of alumina
  • Others   : Us$50 to US$60 per tonne of alumina.
Among Chinese Alumina refineries, Guangxi Alumina Plant has the lowest production cost at around US$320 per tonne of calcined alumina. However, production cost at Shandong Alumina Plant in China works out to around US$380 per tonne of calcined alumina.

The data published data clearly reveal that Indonesia had been the largest exporter of bauxite to China. In the year 2012, Indonesia exported over 36 million tonnes of bauxite to China where as the balance bauxite of about 9 million tonnes was exported by Australia, India and other countries.

Now, Indonesian Government has increased the export tax from 20% in 2012 to 50% in 2013-14. Also, the government has announced complete ban on export of bauxite from 2014 onward as they have decided to preserve their natural resources for the existing and upcoming Alumina plants in their country.

Looking at the above scenario, it has become a very serious issue for China to keep their plants operative in years to come. Presently, China is consuming its total domestic alumina in their own Aluminium smelters for production of aluminium metal. 

In present crisis of bauxite availability from Indonesia, China is exploring the possibility to import bauxite from Guinea. But higher transportation cost of bauxite from Guinea will make the production cost further higher for production of calcined alumina in China.

We have assimilated the above information based on the published literature available on public domain in the interest of our friends of bauxite-alumina-aluminium fraternity across the globe.

We solicit your comments / remarks, if any.

Kunwar Rajendra

Friday, July 26, 2013

Reasons for Coloration in Product Hydrate & Corrective Measures to Improve Whiteness & Brightness

Hi Friends,

First, we would like to share the background of this technical blog. Till the end of 20th century, generally people were reluctant to share their technical knowledge particular on hydrates and alumina. In the back of their mind, it was a general feeling that only a few have particular data / information. But the advancement in communication technology revolutionized the knowledge sharing approach. In order to get advantages of technology and knowledge sharing approach among bauxite, alumina and aluminium professionals, we started this specialized technical blog couple of years ago with aggressive impulse and approach for achieving the difficult goal set by involved team of professionals. Fortunately, we could maintain the accelerated pace so far with our keen interests, enthusiasm and pleasure in publishing wide range of 273 technical articles pertaining to bauxite, alumina and aluminium. Now, when we look back towards the trajectory of our progress path traveled so far , we find that we have surpassed all our targets and goals well ahead of our planned schedule without compromising on quality. This reflects the grand success of one and all associated with this technical blog. Till date, we have more than 60,000 members and 75 Key Members who are closely connected who made their contribution by way of sharing their knowledge, data and information of public domain nature through this unique platform / web site. Today, we are ourselves astonished on our achievements of set goals. On the eve of this grand success day, we would like to express our sincere thanks to renowned Alumina Expert, Mr. George Banvolgyi of Hungary, for his blessings, guidance, inspiration and support during our journey of publishing variety of technical papers on this technical blog. Everybody deserves applaud and congratulations on this eve for bringing this platform to a new higher level of popularity. It gives me immense pleasure to be associated with this site as the founder member among the friends of bauxite, alumina and aluminium fraternity.Our each tiny achievement is the outcome of our efforts and as we consider it as the golden gift of God and hence we must celebrate the same with full enthusiasm and happiness. On similar lines, on achievement of every thousand of added viewers of our technical blog, we make our efforts to publish at least one special technical article on every special occasions. 

Today, we have achieved the total viewers of 60,000 with 76 Key Members across the globe closely associated and contributed in the grand success of this specialized technical blog. This day will definitely remain memorable for all of us and particularly for each member of bauxite-alumina-aluminium fraternity. All viewers and key members of this technical blog deserves congratulations on the eve of this new height of success as every body has contributed directly or indirectly in achieving this sky high target. On this great occasion, we are publishing this unique and special technical article for value addition to product hydrate by making it dazzling white and bright adopting corrective measures in process steps as described here under.

There are several grades of Hydrated alumina (Hydrates) manufactured and marketed across the globe. These hydrates are generally known as Specialty grade hydrate or Non-metallurgical grade hydrate. These are marketed at 2 to 5 times the price of Standard chemical grade hydrate. It has been seen practically that over and above desired chemical composition, brightness or whiteness of hydrates has premium market. Thus it becomes important to address the issue of coloration of hydrate and remedial measures for improving the whiteness so as to add more value to it. 

In present post, we will briefly cover the most probable reasons for coloration of product hydrate and appropriate technical solutions as remedial measures to improve whiteness and brightness as well.

There are two main reasons for coloration in product hydrate and appropriate solutions opined by many process experts as described here in subsequent paragraphs-
  1. High soda content in product hydrate
  2. High suspended solids in Thickener overflow pregnant liquor.
Step-I: With our experience in different Alumina refineries in the World, we have experienced the high soda content in product hydrate as one of the basic reasons. The identification of this issue is confirmed through simple analytical technique by analyzing the Na2O content in product hydrate ready for dispatch to respective customers. If total Na2O content in Hydrate is found more than 0.30% then it confirms that Hydrate generated in precipitators / decomposers / crystallizers has not been washed properly on product filter wherein the maximum component of leachable soda is removed. After observing this high soda content, vigorous washing of hydrate using steam /  hot water at temperature around 95-98oC helps in achieving total Na2O content below 0.30%. This step easily improves the product whiteness. For further improvement on washing efficiency, steam-hood at the discharge side of product filter can also be considered.

Step-II: High Fe2O3 content in product hydrate above 0.010% is the key indication of high suspended solids in filtered aluminate liquor feeding to Decomposers (Crystallizers / Precipitators). The suspended solids must be controlled below 15 mgpl (i.e. 15 milligrams per litre of pregnant liquor) in feed to Decomposers. Higher solids in pregnant liquor happens because of inadequate settling of suspended red mud particles in Liquor thickener for the major reasons listed below-

(a) High generation of fines during grinding of Bauxite:  Control fineness of Bauxite at optimum level to ensure higher settling rate of red mud particles in thickener. Generally, minus 60 mesh fraction in ground bauxite slurry is maintained more than 85%. Check and control it accordingly.

(b) Higher viscosity of thickener overflow liquor because of its lower temperature: Temperature of Thickener overflowliquor must be controlled at around 100-102 degree C if  the concentration of liquor in thickener overflow is at around 140-145 gpl Na2O or above. High concentration profile is the need of modern Alumina refinery in order to have improved productivity so as to minimise thermal and electrical energy consumption.

(c) Selection of right settling agent: Settling agent used for faster settling of residue particles play vital role in achieving desired quality of product. There are different types of natural and synthetic high density polymers are available for different application. It has been observed that mixed natural starch with particular type of synthetic floccullent are  cost effective for Alumina refinery. 

(d) Selection of proper filter cloth for polishing filtration equipment: Selection of proper filter cloth is equally essential for controlling suspended solids in filtered aluminate liquor fed to crystallizers. Polypropylene filter cloth of more than 30 and 32 EPI and PPI have been found to be the most suitable cloth for security filtration.

(e) Controlling ingress of P2Ocontent in Bauxite: At times, high P2O5 content in Bauxite affects the settling rate of residue (Red mud) in thickener. To eliminate this issue, start adding small quantity of Burnt lime (CaO) in Bauxite being fed to Grinding mill. This results in reducing the Phosphorus content in liquor forming Calcium Phosphate.

(f) Control Filter feed pressure below 2.0 kg/cm2.g: Lower the fitration pressure better is the filtrate quality. Pressure around 2.9 kg/cm2.g has been found to be optimum.

(g) Control solids in Thickener overflow Liquor well within 100 mgpl: Suspended solids in feed liquor to filter should be controlled well within 100 mgpl so as to avoid extra load of residue on polishing filtration unit thereby improving the filtrate quality to crystallizers,

(h) Optimize dosing of TCA: TCA (Tri calcium aluminate) addition to filter feed liquor results in improved fitrate quality. It has been established in various plants across the globe that mass flow of TCA equal to 10 times of suspended solids in Thickener is optimum.

Step-III: Check & Replace Security Filters in Service: Even after checking and monitoring all the above mentioned parameters stated under Step-I & II, if there is no appreciable improvement in filtrate clarity, then it concludes that some thing wrong with filtration equipment itself. In such situation, replacement of Polishing filters with suitably sized and designed security filters is the ultimate solution to this problem. Since this step requires additional capital expenditure fot the plant, thus decision needs to be taken only after thorough investigations of results obtained during Step-I and Step-II under the guidance of process expert who has operated the similar systems in any Alumina refinery across the globe.

Aluminium Trihydrate
Trust, all major possible reasons for poor filtrate clarity have been covered here and desired solutions have been presented with utmost care. In case, we have missed out any major reason, please come forward and put your views under Comments just below the article. Our team of experts will welcome your valuable comments / remarks in the benefit of readers across the globe. Everybody will like to have hydrated alumina with whiteness and brightness as shown here in the pictorial view. The major chemical constituents and coarseness / fineness are given below-
Fe2O3: 0.007%, SiO2: 0.007%, Na2O:0.23% and Minus 45 microns: ~ 90%. This hydrate is the basic input material for producing American Diamond for jewelry, Thread guides, Sealing rings for pumps and many other valuable products. The author was deeply involved in development of this product, project engineering, trial run and manufacture of this product in the plant. Thus, if you can feel this product, you can definitely produce it in your own plant. Trust, our learned friends of alumina fraternity will put their valuable remarks and opinions under comments paragraph which will help in enriching our knowledge base towards our approach and methodology in achieving better results in future. Your views / remarks / comments matter for us for improvements in forthcoming articles. Please never be hesitant in expressing your opinions. We seek your continued support and welcome your suggestions.

Kind regards.

Kunwar Rajendra

Monday, July 8, 2013

Capex, Opex and Techno-economic Viability for Green-Field Alumina Refinery in India

Hi Friends,

Today is the great day for all of us who are deeply associated with this knowledge sharing technical blog on Alumina processing technology. It is needless to mention here that our blog has earned a prestigious position among the people of Bauxite-alumina-aluminium fraternity in short span of time. Congratulations to all concerned on the eve of crossing the total viewer mark of 59,000 today. This glorious moment is remarkable and memorable as we are proceeding ahead in setting the new height of success. We are continuously receiving appreciations from our learned friends for high level of quality of content published so far and feedback for further improvements. 

In present post, we are bringing out some special facts which will be useful for the top notch officials in taking strategic decisions with regard to capital investments, Operating cost and techno-economic viability aspects for setting up new Alumina refineries in India. 

As such, only a few Alumina refineries were constructed and commissioned across the globe during last decade. Broad details and present status of new refineries executed over last 15 years / under execution presently  in India are outlined in subsequent paragraphs-
  1. 1.4 Mtpa Vedanta Alumina Refinery, India: This plant was designed for 1.4 Mtpa alumina with two streams each stream having 0.70 Mtpa production capacity. One of the stream of this plant was commissioned  in 2006 with non-designated source of bauxite as Niyamgiri deposits could not be cleared  by the Government of India for carrying out bauxite mining activities.  The specific capital investment for this plant was very low as the company took advantage of volatile market of equipment and facilities during execution period. But processing of low alumina content and high reactive silica content in bauxite of unidentified areas during commissioning itself made the plant uneconomical. Finally, the shutdown of the plant was forced on 9th December 2012 because of non-availability of bauxite. Plant remains shutdown as yet. However, the Vedanta management is striving to restart the operation of this plant shortly even with imported bauxite.
  2. 1.4 Mtpa Anrak Alumina Refinery, India: This plant is located at about 70 km from Visakhapatnam in the state of Andhra Pradesh in India. This Alumina refinery has two streams of 0.70 Mtpa each and the execution is expected to be completed for commissioning by end of the current year - 2013. Most of the equipment and facilities of this plant have been installed and one of the process streams out of two are in readiness for trial but no adequate bauxite available as the earmarked Jarrella bauxite deposits are yet to be cleared by the Government. The trial run for Stationary calciner supplied by Outotec Germany was done in early first week of April 2013 with purchased hydrate and a few thousand tonnes of calcined alumina could be produced. HSD was used as the fuel for firing followed by HFO for calcination during commissioning trial. The estimated specific capital investment of this plant was much higher than that of Vedanta. But this plant could save substantially on technology, engineering and site activities during implementation.
  3. 1.5 Mtpa Utkal Alumina Refinery, India: This plant is owned by Aditya Birla group of companies. The execution of this plant was conceived sometime in 1996. The construction of this plant is in advance stage and mechanical completion of this plant is expected by the end of 2013. This plant has been designed by Rio Tinto Alcan Australia who are considered leader in process technology across the globe. But because of inordinate delay in implementation because of various socio-political reasons, the capex of this project has increased substantially. Thus the specific capital investment of Utkal alumina plant was much higher than targeted figure. 
  4. 1.4 Mtpa JSW Alumina Refinery, India: Under diversification plan, JSW group company decided to set up alumina refinery in Vijaya Nagaram district of Andhra Pradesh with state of the art and most modern plant associating Rio Tinto Alcan Australia as technology supplier in the year 2005. The company has acquired adequate land but execution of project is under hold awaiting clearance from Government of India for bauxite mining from Araku group of deposits.
  5. 1.0 Mtpa NALCO Alumina Refinery, India: National Aluminium Company (NALCO) has initiated studies for setting up 1.0 Mtpa Alumina refinery near Mandavi in Gujarat. As per our estimates, the specific capital investment for this project will be high at around US$ 1000 per   tonne of Calcined alumina mainly because of Lignite based Co-generation plant, required Desalination plant, marginally bigger size equipment requirement because of lower alumina recovery from available bauxite in Gujarat and additional expenditure towards development of infrastructure facilities like port etc. for the project.
The capital expenditure data analysis clearly reveal that specific capital investment in setting up Alumina refineries in India varies from US$ 650 to US$ 1000 per tonne of calcined alumina depending on geographic location of the plant in the country. The capex will be lowest for the plant in Orissa, Gujarat and Jharkhand where as the same will highest in Gujarat.  The reasons are well known to all concern as elaborated in above paragraph. Also, the opex will be higher mainly because of poor plant efficiency figures due to wide variation in mineralogical and chemical composition of basic input material, Bauxite. Also, the volume effect of plant capacity because of low reserve of Bauxite in Gujarat is the other reason. It will be prudent to mention that comparatively lower grade of bauxite, non-availability of desalinated water, availability of low calorific value solid fuel source (Lignite) for co-generation plant are the main reasons for highest capex. Again, on opex part, the same will be abnormally high because of poor plant efficiency figures coupled with low grade of bauxite in Gujarat. At current price level of Caustic soda, Heavy furnace oil and Lignite, even the economic viability for Alumina refinery in Gujarat is a question mark because of high specific capital investment of around US$1000 per tonne and estimated operating cost excluding financing charges (interest & depreciation) at around US$ 200 per tonne of Calcined alumina as per preliminary estimates.However, the actual figures of Capex and Opex can be ascertained by Project Owner with detailed studies before taking financial decision on the matter. In spite of all these facts stated above, Green-field Alumina refineries will be installed mostly in India and Vietnam in coming decade because of huge bauxite reserves of comparatively improved quality than other countries across the globe. In other words, India and Vietnam are the future destinations for green-field Alumina refineries in years to come.

Trust, the above deliberation will give a glimpse of required capex, opex and economic viability aspects for setting up green-field Alumina refinery to one and all across the globe. The author of this technical article will welcome your comments on the subject, if any. Please feel free in sharing your views.

Kunwar Rajendra