Advanced Reagent-Based Solutions for Alumina Processing

As demand for alumina increases across the globe, refineries face growing pressure to improve efficiency and reduce their environmental impact. As the leading reagent solutions provider and partner to alumina refineries for more than 50 years, Solvay helps many of the largest operations worldwide reach their potential. We leverage breakthrough innovations, formulation expertise, application knowledge, modeling capabilities and on-site technical support to help customers maximize productivity and reduce energy consumption, with help from our full suite of alumina processing reagents for the Bayer Process. 

Our Alumina Processing Chemical Families

Solvay offers a wide range of product groups to address the most pressing industry challenges and respond to growing complexity in the alumina processing field. Our advanced alumina processing chemicals address: 

• Requirements for improved efficiency • The need for products with improved health and safety profiles • Demand for more eco-friendly processing • High energy consumption and associated carbon emissions • High liquor organics • Increasing levels of iron • Poor thickener and washer settling • High calciner feed moisture • Inefficient hydrate settling • Undesirable foaming issues • Low mill throughput • High fines generation and attrition index

To meet these needs, Solvay’s comprehensive portfolio of Bayer Process reagents includes:   

 Scale Inhibitors • Bauxite Grinding and Handling Aids • Humate Removal Aids • Red Mud Flocculants • Iron Removal Aids • Filtration Aids • Defoamers • Crystal Growth Modifiers • Hydrate Flocculants • Dewatering Aids • Dust Control Agents

As each refinery is unique, our experts can develop tailored strategies and formulations to help customers achieve challenging financial and performance goals.

Pioneering Alumina Processing Chemicals Innovation

When it comes to alumina processing aids, Solvay never stops innovating. 


Scale Inhibition

Our proven track record of innovation includes the development of a novel solution for scale control. For decades, the alumina industry was plagued by chronic scale buildup, leading to plant shutdowns for maintenance, which also required the use of harmful acids. Operators accepted scale as an issue to be dealt with, until Solvay introduced an alumina scale inhibitor, MAX HT® Sodalite Scale Inhibitor, which prevents sodalite scale from forming in heat exchangers, leading to improved energy consumption, reduced emissions and less frequent downtime. Learn more about the operational and sustainability benefits of MAX HT®.

heat exchanger comparison






Heat exchange tube without MAX HT® use (left) demonstrates significant scale buildup

Improved Efficiency

The alumina processing industry has grown significantly over the past decades as global reliance on aluminum-based products increases. Our range of flocculants improves efficiency across processing stages and has promoted growth in alumina processing around the world. Even when operators are faced with lower-grade bauxite ore featuring a higher percentage of impurities, Solvay’s continual innovation in flocculant reagent technology allows plants to effectively process this challenging raw material. Specifically, our CYFLOC® HX flocculants provide high settling rates, reduced suspended solids and clearer overflows for more efficient red mud separation, even when working with difficult settling bauxites

Reduced Emissions

Across industries, sustainability has become a nonnegotiable aspect of doing business. Solvay’s broad range of reagents for alumina processing can help plants improve overall processing efficiency and reduce emissions. Our CYFLOC® HX red mud flocculants and MAX HT® sodalite scale inhibitor contribute to more environmentally conscious processes by improving mud separation and heat transfer efficiency, respectively. Additionally, our scientists are continuing to develop breakthrough technologies suitable for single-stream digestion processes that allow for improved energy efficiency, reduced carbon emissions and increased production.

Innovation in Development: Organics Removal and Waste Disposal

Throughout the Bayer Process, operators must remove impurities that can accumulate in the Bayer liquor, resulting in lower precipitation efficiency, reduced production rates and other operating issues. While Solvay has developed technologies such as defoamers, humate removal reagents, and crystal growth modifiers to help refineries address some of the issues caused by the organics, Solvay’s scientists continue developing more efficient organic removal solutions by leveraging our core competencies in hydrometallurgical applications. Our experts are collaborating with industrial partners in order to improve the disposal process and find valuable uses for bauxite residue, also known as red mud.