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Mining the Future: A 21st Century Metal (RESOURCESTOCKS)

- By: John P Sykes
Posted in: Commodities, Exploration, Mining, Publications, Recommended


If you look in the September/October edition of RESOURCESTOCKS magazine you will find a article by myself and good friend Josh Wright of Rowton Ltd, entitled “Mining the Future: A 21st Century Metal”.

The article reviews how a number of supply, demand and discover factors have to fall in line for paradigmatic change in the scale of a minerals market to occur, citing aluminium as an example of such change. Whilst geologically abundant, aluminium was economically rare upto the beginning of the 2oth century, when technological innovations on the supply side, including bulk mining technologies, the Bayer process and the Hell-Heroult process, combined with demand side innovation including the automobile and aeroplane, along with high demand during the early 20th century wars, transformed the metal into a major industrial commodity. As a result, we label aluminium as the ’20th Century Metal’. The article them reviews which of a current tranche of ‘minor metals’ including  bismuth, gallium, germanium, indium, selenium, titanium, magnesium, cadmium, cobalt, lithium and vanadium, to see which have the potential to be transformed as the aluminium industry was, and thus become the the ’21st Century Metal’.