Advances in Agronomy, Vol. 17 by A.G. Norman (Ed.)

By A.G. Norman (Ed.)

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Also, the Israel Mining Industries has developed a process in which the phosphoric acid is extracted from calcium chloride solution with aliphatic alcohols. Small prototype plants involving this process are now operating in Israel and Japan. Use of hydrochloric acid to produce wet-process acid has the advantage of the hydrochloric acid being plentiful as a waste or by-product of many industries and having a superior ability to extract phosphorus from phosphate rock of varying grades without fine grinding.

Use of wet-process acid has increased rapidly in recent years, reflecting not only the increased demand for phosphate fertilizers, but also the change from low- to high-analysis fertaizers that require more concentrated phosphate materials. Although sulfuric acid is used commercially to digest phosphate rock to form phosphoric acid, any common mineral acid can be used. Sulfuric has been adopted not only for cost reasons, but also because the main products of the reaction (phosphoric acid and calcium sulfate) can be separated with less difficulty by filtration.

Reserves minable under present conditions are estimated at 3 billion tons, while lower grade reserves may represent as much as 20 billion tons. All indications are that production in the West will increase rapidly in the future. Morocco, second to the United States in production, is the worlds largest phosphate rock exporter (British Sulphur Corporation, 1964). Its exports amount to 40 per cent of the world's total, much of which is shipped to Europe. 5 million short tons of about a 14 per cent P (32 per cent PZO5)product.

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