PROFILE ON PRODUCTION OF KAOLIN

An estimated reserve of 3 billion tonnes of good kaolinitic clays has been identified. This supply deficit resulted in the increase in the price of soybean meal within ten months, reaching a high $670 per ton last September 2011.

This profile envisages the establishment of a plant for the production of soya bean milk with a capacity of 450,000 liters per annum. The present demand for the proposed product is estimated at 350 MTons per annum. The demand is expected to reach at 600 MTons by the year 2022.  The plant will create employment opportunities for 21 persons. The total investment requirement is estimated at about N18.335 million, out of which N6.5 million is required for plant and machinery.

The project is financially viable with the following profitability indices:

 

Average Return on Assets                                60.6%

 Average Return on Equity                              70.4%

 Average Return on Sales                                 32.0%

 Average Debt service coverage                       4.6

 Average proportion of Debt                             0.277

 Average proportion of Equity                          0.723

 Average Debt/Equity Ratio                              27.7:72.3

 Average Operating ratio                                   42.3%

 Average current ratio                                        4.44

 UnDiscounted Pay back period (yr)                 4.2

 Net present Value (N000)                                46243.7

 Internal Rate of Return                                     42.5%

 Break Even point(Based on year1)(Sales)        36876.7

 Fractional capacity utilization                           0.488

 Selling Price N000.00                                       8.0000

 

Kaolin has many industrial uses. It is soft, has low viscosity at high solids content in many systems, is readily wet and dispersed in water and some organic systems, and can be produced with a controlled particle size distribution Some of the important physical constants of kaolin are: specific gravity, 2.60; index of refraction, 1.56; hardness (Mobs scale), 2; fusion temperature, 1850o C; dry brightness, 78-92 percent,( measured at 458 mµ on a General Electric recording speetrophotometer, against MgO Reference). As mentioned previously many kaolins have a low viscosity at relatively high solids content. For example, many kaolins can be dispersed readily in water at 70 percent solids by weight and the resultant slurry pours like fresh milk. This is an attractive property for the paper coating industry.

Nigerian Kaolin is known to have purity as high as 90% and an estimated reserve of three (3) billion metric tones distributed in various parts of the country where it is found (MSMD, undated). It is known to be located in large quantity (Table 1) at Katsina, Plateau, Bauchi, Ogun, Ondo, Niger, Oyo, Kwara, Benue, Enugu and Ekiti States of the country (RMRDC-TB, 2004). The Katsina kaolin deposit is adjudge the best for pharmaceutical and drug applications because it has a characteristic chemical composition that fits that purpose. For a wide range of industrial application, it is estimated that the annual national demand for kaolin is over 350,000 tones.

The ranges of particle size distribution in which kaolins are produced commercially are shown in Fig. 1. Several end uses of kaolin depend upon the particle size distribution. In many applications a coarse-particle kaolin may not work whereas a fine-particle kaolin will, and vice versa. Some of the more important industrial uses will be described in this paper, but it must be realized that these descriptions, of necessity, are brief and incomplete. More than 2,000,000 tons of kaolin is used annually in the United States (de Polo, 1960, p.207).

 

K-WHITE is a composition of calcined aluminum silicate suitable for most general applications, with a lower pH and higher moisture content than the K-WHITE 5000 and 7000 variations.

K-WHITE 5000 is an ultrafine and super-white calcined aluminum silicate for premium paper and board manufacturing characterized by high brightness, high covering capacity, good light scattering performance, good suspension capacity and easy dispersing performance. Primary uses include paper coating, paper filling, and deinking of recycled paper.

K-WHITE 7000 is an ultrafine and super-white calcined kaolin for the ceramics industry is characterized by high dielectric strength, high fusion point, low water content, and high green strength. It is commonly used in white-ware products, insulators, refractories, and bio-ceramics.

 

TABLE1: PROPERTIES OF KAOLIN PRODUCTS

  K-WHITE K-WHITE 5000 K-WHITE 7000
Composition Al2O3  2SiO2 Al2O3  2SiO2 Al2O3  2SiO2
Appearance White Powder White Powder White Powder
Whiteness (%) >95% ≥94% ≥93%
Particle Size 2±1.5μm (-2μm%) ≥88 (-2μm%) ≥83
325 Mesh Residue (45µm %)   0.005 0.05
Oil Absorbancy (g/100g)   (g/100g): >60 (g/100g): >55
pH 4.5~5.0 6.0-8.0 6.0-8.0
Moisture (%) <0.65% ≤0.5% ≤0.5%
Disperse Sediment   ≤45μm ≤45μm
Refractive Index   1.6 1.6

 

 TABLE2: KAOLINITIC CLAY DEPOSITS IN NIGERIA

Region

State (Location)

Reserve (MillionTonnes)

 

South            

Kaduna (Mararaban-Rido)                           

 Katsina (Kankara, Safana, Malumfashi, Musawa,Faskari, Ingawa, Dushin-Ma, Bakori)

 Kebbi (Illo, Kaoje)   

 Plateau (Major Portar, Nahuta)  Borno (Maiduguri)

 Kwara (Lafiagi)

 Bauchi (Darazo, Jagalwa)

Benue (Apa, Iga Okpava, Okpaga)  Niger (Gubaji, Gbako)

 

 

5.5

 

 

 

 

 

Very large

 

Very large

 

8.0

Large

 

Large

 

18.0

 

 

10.

Very large

 

South            

Anambra (Ogubulu)

  Enugu (Enugu)

  Oyo (Tede)

 Ogun (Onibode,      Ibamaje, Miroko)

 

4.2

 

50

 

1.5

 

Large

 





























Source-RMRDC MCTS Survey Report, 2003.

 

I.                MARKET STUDY

 

Kaolin is used as filler and coating for paper, in rubber, refractory, cements, fertilizers, catalyst carrier, anticaking preparations. The demand for the product is met through local production and import.

TABLE 3: PRODUCT SPECIFICATION FOR KAOLIN

 

 

                                                        Selected Industries in Nigeria

Chemical          

Pharmaceuticals(%)  

Ceramics (%)

Filling Agent(%) 

Coating Agent(%) 

Steel(%)

SiO2

48.00

48.00

48.70

47.80

5.00

Al2O3

36.00                           

37.00                           

36.00                           

37.00                           

0.002

Fe2O3

0.10

0.60

0.82

0.58

0.002

TiO2

0.02

0.3

0.05

0.03

-

CaO                   

0.01

0.10

0.60

0.40

54.28

MgO

0.20

0.30

0.25

0.16

3.00

K2O

1.10

1.60

2.10

0.10

-

Na2O                

0.10

0.10

0.10

0.10

-

LOI

11.90

12.40

11.90

13.10

-

Source--RMRDC MCTS Survey Report, 2003

             

                         

The slightly low percentage of 0.10 and 0.02 for Fe2O3 and TiO2 respectively for pharmaceutical industries when compared with the percentage for ceramics coating and filling agent gives the uniqueness in the quality specification of kaolin required in the pharmaceutical industries. Other unique specifications of pharmaceutical is the low percentage of CaO (0.01), MgO (0.20) when compared with the percentage composition of similar oxides in other products (Ceramics, Filling agents, Coating agents and Steel).

 

2.1  Uses of Kaolin

 

Paper

The largest single user of kaolin is the paper industry, which used approximately1,200,000 tons in 1958 (de Polo, 1960, p. 207). Because kaolin is used, paper products print better and are made whiter and smoother. Kaolin used as a filler in the interstices of the sheet adds ink receptivity and opacity to the paper sheet. Kaolin used to coat the surface of the paper sheet makes possible sharp photographic illustrations and bright printed colors. Kaolin constitutes nearly one-third the weight of today's slick sheet magazines. The significant properties of kaolin of greatest value to the paper industry are whiteness, low viscosity, non-abrasiveness, controlled particle sizes, and flat hexagonal plates. Opacity is an extremely important property to the paper industry and Fig. 7 shows the relationship between the particle size of the kaolin and opacity. Brightness, gloss, and viscosity properties also depend on particle size

Rubber

Kaolin is used as a filler in many rubber goods. It adds strength, abrasion resistance, and rigidity to both natural and synthetic rubber products. In general, most rubber products extrude more easily after kaolin filler is added. The major reason that kaolin is used in rubber compounds is its whiteness and low cost. Although kaolin costs less than most other rubber pigments, it has excellent functional properties.

 

Ceramics

Kaolin is used in ceramic whiteware products, insulators, and refractories(Smoot, this Volume).

In whitewares, kaolin aids accurate control of molding properties, and adds dry and fired strength, dimensional stability, and a smooth surface finish to the ware. The excellent dielectric properties and chemical inertness of kaolin make it well suited for porcelain electrical insulators. In refractory applications, the dimensional stability, high fusion point, and low water content, along with high green strength, make kaolin an important constituent.

 

Paint

Kaolin is used in paint because it is chemically inert and insoluble in the paint system, has a high covering power, gives the paint desirable flow properties, and is low in cost.

 

Plastics

 The addition of kaolin to thermosetting and thermoplastic mixes gives smoother surfaces, a more attractive finish, good dimensional stability, and high resistance to chemical attack. In addition, the flat hexagonal kaolin plates hide the reinforcing fibers and give the mix flowability to simplify tile molding of complex shapes.

Other Applications

 

Kaolin has many other industrial applications, some of which are listed here: Ink, cement, detergents, adhesives, fertilizers, porcelain enamels, insecticides, plaster, paste, medicines, filter aids, roofing granules, food additives, cosmetics, sizing, foundries, catalyst preparations, chemicals, bleaching, crayons, linoleum, adsorbents, pencils, floor tiles, and textiles                                        

Kaolin production in Nigeria

 

There is little or no kaolin production in Nigeria, hence the information on industrial minerals such as kaolin will provide a knowledge of the demand for talc since they are used interchangeably. Some of the industries that use the products are paper, ceramics , rubber ,paint, insecticide, fertilizer, cosmetics, soap and detergent. A demand survey was conducted and results shown below:

 


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