Mined bauxite ore is refined into alumina, through what is known as the Bayer process.

The Bayer process, discovered in 1887, extracts alumina from bauxite through crushing, dissolving it in caustic soda, filtration and an electrolytic process. A white powder, similar to table salt, called alumina is produced and can then be smelted into aluminium metal to be used in things like cars, packaging, powering the nation and consumer products.

Around two tonnes of alumina is required to produce one tonne of aluminium.

Across our business we produce about 5.3 kilotonnes of alumina a year.

We mine and refine bauxite into alumina at South32’s Worsely Alumina and Brazil Alumina.

We smelt alumina into aluminium at South32’s Mozal smelter and South Africa Aluminium’s Hillside smelter.