Special clays: Gelling new markets

By IM Staff
Published: Friday, 09 June 2017

Hectorite has attracted significant attention in the last few years as a potential source of lithium, while clays like attapulgite and sepiolite have for decades been important sources of speciality material. Ian Wilson, Consultant*, offers a snapshot of the special clays sector.

Special clays are a group of products derived from a number of different clay minerals found in a wide range of geological environments. 

Two important mineral groups within the special clays field are the smectite group, which includes montmorillonite, saponite and hectorite, generally referred to as bentonites; and the...

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