The Soviet Journal of Atomic Energy

, Volume 5, Issue 2, pp 983-991

First online:

Present situation in the production and use of thorium

  • G. E. Kaplan
  • , Iu. I. Zarembo
  • , T. A. Uspenskaia

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The possible uses of thorium in the atomic industry and in other branches of industry, for example in the production of high-melting magnesium alloys, have resulted in an intense development of the thorium industry and in research work in this field. In recent years, a number of plants have been built in the U.S.A., India, Brazil and other countries for the treatment of thorium raw material. The recovery of thorium and the rare-earth elements from monazite is carried out mainly by alkaline methods. Extraction processes are widely used for the production of pure thorium compounds. Metallic thorium is produced by metallothermal methods and also by the electrolysis of chloride-fluoride or purely fluoride baths. Compact metallic thorium is obtained by the power metallurgical method or by the melting method.