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IM March 2017


  • Comment: Game-changer

    In February 2014, Elon Musk, CEO of Tesla Motors, said that he would be building what he called a Gigafactory “somewhere in the US” to manufacture lithium-ion batteries for his cars. Read More

Latest News


Refractories Hotline

  • Lonmin’s chromite sales down in Q4

    International miner Lonmin Plc saw a marked decrease in its chromite sales in the last quarter of 2016 against the same period in 2015, the company reported in its latest production update. Read More

  • Anglo American opens chrome recovery plant

    Diversified miner Anglo American Platinum Ltd has opened a chrome recovery plant at its Amandelbult Complex in South Africa’s Limpopo Province, which is expected to reach full production during H1 2017, the company announced in February. Read More

  • Afarak to reopen chrome mine on improved market

    Finland-headquartered Afarak Group Plc will reopen its opencast chrome mine in Mecklenburg, South Africa owing to favourable market conditions, and plans to set up an underground ore extraction facility. Read More

  • Australian Bauxite posts strong sales

    ASX-listed Australian Bauxite sold a total of 45,590 tonnes bauxite products since the start of operations at its Tasmanian mine last year, and the company sees strong prospects for the cement-grade bauxite market. Read More

  • Indonesia eases bauxite export ban

    Foreign sales of bauxite partially allowed; No clarity on volumes of material; Permit system to run for five years Read More

Logistics News

  • Special agent on mission to solve snags in commodity shipping

    Newly-launched shipping agency WaterFront Maritime believes that there has been a loss of expertise in seaborne commodities transport in recent years and that the sector’s uncertain trading conditions present a perfect opportunity to offer tailored logistics services, Rose Pengelly, IM Correspondent, finds. Read More


People & Places


  • A new era for the salt supply chain

    Salt demand is closely linked to predictable factors such as population growth, but also to erratic phenomena like weather patterns, making the outlook for the industry hard to predict. David McNeill*, Senior Analyst at Roskill Information Services, assesses current trends in the global salt market. Read More

  • Charging forward

    Two months after the production cogs began to churn out battery cells at Tesla’s ‘Gigafactory’, Myles McCormick, Reporter, investigates the arrival of lithium-ion battery megafactories, the hurdles they face and their significance for raw material demand. Read More

  • Solid state batteries: The next evolution in Li-ion technology?

    Lithium-ion batteries have been plugged as the enablers of countless next generation electronic devices, but there remain kinks in the technology that engineers are struggling to iron out. Rose Pengelly, IM Correspondent, spoke to high-tech materials developer Ilika about how solid state designs may provide some of the answers battery users are looking for. Read More

  • Storing up potential

    Falling prices of renewable energy, increased interest in energy storage and demand for versatile off-grid applications spell good news for the expanding vanadium battery market, Davide Ghilotti, Chief Reporter, finds. Read More

  • TiO2 feedstocks turn a corner

    A rebound in titanium dioxide prices and demand has paved the way for positive momentum in the mineral sands sector. Kasia Patel, North American Editor, and Cameron Perks, IM Correspondent, look at current industry trends and planned new projects in the sector. Read More


  • Nordic Mining case closed

    The ESA closed three complaint cases against Norway’s decision to permit mineral sands junior Nordic Mining to dispose of rutile tailings in the Ford Fjord. Nordic Mining spoke to Kasia Patel, North American Editor, about its processing plans and safeguards for sustainable tailings disposal. Read More

Company Profile

  • Blue sky thinking in energy storage

    From electric vehicles and car-sharing to boats and gondolas, French-Canadian battery maker Blue Solutions is targeting a wide range of end markets with its novel energy storage technologies. Read More