Investing in Vanadium

Vanadium is a transition metal commonly used to create high strength alloys of steel.

Domestic Production and Use: Seven U.S. firms that comprise most of the domestic vanadium industry produced ferrovanadium, vanadium pentoxide, vanadium metal, and vanadium-bearing chemicals or specialty alloys by processing materials such as petroleum residues, spent catalysts, utility ash, and vanadium-bearing pig iron slag. Metallurgical use, primarily as an alloying agent for iron and steel, accounted for about 97% of the domestic vanadium consumption in 2009. Of the other uses for vanadium, the major nonmetallurgical use was in catalysts for the production of maleic anhydride and sulfuric acid.

Recycling: Some tool steel scrap was recycled primarily for its vanadium content, and vanadium was recycled from spent chemical process catalysts, but these two sources together accounted for only a very small percentage of total vanadium consumed. The vanadium content of other recycled steels was lost to slag during processing and was not recovered.

Import Sources (200609): Ferrovanadium: Republic of Korea, 38%; Czech Republic, 30%; Canada, 20%; Austria, 9%; and other, 3%. Vanadium pentoxide: South Africa, 39%; Russia, 32%; China, 28%; and other, 1%.

Events, Trends, and Issues: U.S. apparent consumption of vanadium recovered in 2010 from its relatively low level in 2009; apparent consumption of vanadium declined dramatically in 2009 from that of 2008 owing to the global economic downturn in 2009. Among the major uses for vanadium, production of carbon, full-alloy, and high-strength, low-alloy steels accounted for 14%, 41%, and 33% of domestic consumption, respectively. U.S. imports for consumption in 2010 were 69% more than that of the previous year. U.S. exports were approximately 12% more than those of the previous year. In 2010, U.S. steel production was expected to increase from that of 2009. Given the increase in steel demand, the vanadium industry was expected to continue to slowly recover.

Vanadium pentoxide (V2O5) prices continued to slowly increase to a high of $7.50 per pound of V2O5 in May 2010 before decreasing again in June. In May 2009, V2O5 prices averaged $4.13 per pound of V2O5, 45% less than average V2O5 prices in May 2010. Ferrovanadium (FeV) prices followed a similar trend with a high of $16.76 per pound of FeV in May 2010. In May 2009, FeV prices averaged $8.56 per pound of FeV, almost 50% less than average FeV prices in May 2010.

World Resources: World resources of vanadium exceed 63 million tons. Vanadium occurs in deposits of phosphate rock, titaniferous magnetite, and uraniferous sandstone and siltstone, in which it constitutes less than 2% of the host rock. Significant amounts are also present in bauxite and carboniferous materials, such as coal, crude oil, oil shale, and tar sands. Because vanadium is usually recovered as a byproduct or coproduct, demonstrated world resources of the element are not fully indicative of available supplies. While domestic resources and secondary recovery are adequate to supply a large portion of domestic needs, a substantial part of U.S. demand is currently met by foreign material.

Substitutes: Steels containing various combinations of other alloying elements can be substituted for steels containing vanadium. Certain metals, such as manganese, molybdenum, niobium (columbium), titanium, and tungsten, are to some degree interchangeable with vanadium as alloying elements in steel. Platinum and nickel can replace vanadium compounds as catalysts in some chemical processes. There is currently no acceptable substitute for vanadium in aerospace titanium alloys.

Vanadium Producers
Apella Resources (CVE: APA) - Iron-T Vanadium-Iron-Titanium Project near Matagami, Quebec
Baobab Resources (LON: BAO) - Tete iron-vanadium-titanium project in Mozambique
Chengde Xinxin Vanadium & Titanium Co (SHA: 600357)
Denison Mines (AMEX: DNN) - - Their White Mesa Mill in Blanding, Utah produces vanadium pentoxide or "black flake".
Energizer Resources (CVE: EGZ)
Energy Fuels (TSE: EFR) - - Vanadium and uranium mining. Whirlwind Mine in the Upper Uravan Mineral Belt annd Energy Queen Mine in the La Sal Mineral Belt near La Sal, Utah.
ESPI High Purity Metals -
Evraz Group -
Gossan Resources (CVE: GSS)
Highveld Steel and Vanadium (JNB: HVL) -
Largo Resources (CVE: LGO) - - Maracas vanadium project in the Jacare River mafic-ultramafic intrusion in Bahia, Brazil.
MacDonald Mines Exploration (CVE: BMK) - Butler Lake Project in the James Bay Lowlands, Northen Ontario
Metallurg Vanadium - - This subsidiary of AMG Advanced Metallurgical Group (AMS: AMG) produces vanadium oxytrichloride, ammonium metavanadate, vanadyl sulphate, vanadyl oxalate, sodium metavanadate, vanadium pentoxide, potassium metavanadate, sodium ammonium vanadate, and ferrovanadium.
Panzhihua New Steel & Vanadium Co (SHE: 000629) -
Reed Resources (ASX: RDR) -
Ring of Fire Resourecs (CVE: ROF)
Rocky Mountain Resources (CVE: RKY) - - Gibellini property in Eureka County, Nevada
Stonehenge Metals - joint venture with Yong Jin Specialty Steel to sell vanadium and molybdenum
Windimurra Vanadium (ASX: WVL) -
Xstrata (LON: XTA) - - Xstrata Alloys produces vanadium pentoxide and ferrovanadium in Rhovan, South Africa. They also produce vanadium trioxide.

Vanadium International Technical Committee (VANITEC) -

Vanadium price chart -

(wiki) - Vanadium on Wikipedia

Vanadium News
2011-07-18 - (rin) - Vanadium batteries for sustainable energy
2011-07-07 - (mw) - WA vanadium/titanium deposit 'ripe' for Chinese investment
2011-06-28 - (use) - American Vanadium announces private placement of up to $2.5 million
2011-06-27 - (bw) - New technological advances and steel industry development: Key vanadium market drivers
2011-06-09 - (mw) - Largo submits application for construction license for the Maracas Vanadium Project in Bahia, Brazil
2011-06-06 - (pi) - TNG looks to boost Mount Peake iron vanadium JORC Resource on drill results
2011-05-25 - (isa) - Vanadium: The best thing since lithium
2011-05-24 - (mw) - Energizer Resources' Green Giant Vanadium Project visited by Madagascar's Prime Minister, Minister of Mines, and other key officials
2011-05-17 - (ri) - American vanadium: Critical to US industry
2011-05-16 - (mw) - Apella Resources Inc.: Drill Program Update, Iron-T Vanadium-Iron-Titanium Project
2011-05-11 - (mw) - MacDonald Mines announces vanadium assays from Butler Lake Project in the 'Ring of Fire'
2011-04-19 - (mw) - Largo Resources Engages Promon to Engineer and Build Maracas Vanadium Project, Bahia, Brazil
2011-02-10 - (reu) - Ring of Fire Resources Inc. announces drilling on the McNugget JV ground and project update
2010-11-19 - (mw) - Gossan completes field prgram at Pipestone Vanadium Project
2010-11-15 - (vin) - Vanadium use growing in renewable energy
2010-11-09 - (te) - Nanoparticle study focuses on high-manganese steels
2010-10-14 - (ri) - The vanadium paradox
2010-10-04 - (pi) - Rocky Mountain Resources: Low costs offering a competitive advantage
2010-01-20 - (cnn) - Crosshair intersects 0.20% vanadium over 43 metres
2010-01-13 - (cnn) - Apella bullish on vanadium prospects
2009-10-13 - (pmi) - How to invest in ruthenium, vanadium and titanium
2008-07-16 - (cp) - How to play the quest for fuel efficiency: Invest in vanadium

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