Auto sales and safe air demands drive palladium use
- Published: Jun 20, 2018, 5 AM
Nearly 80 percent of the world palladium supply is consumed by the automobile industry for use in catalytic converters to control toxic emissions released into the environment, according to North American Palladium Ltd. in Toronto, Ontario, Canada.
Palladium is used as a thin coating on ceramic filters to convert deadly carbon monoxide and nitrogen oxide produced in burning fuel into mostly nitrogen, oxygen, carbon dioxide, and water.
The automobile industry’s demand has more than doubled over the past decade, according to North American Palladium.
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Russia accounts for 38 percent of the world’s palladium supply, South Africa achieves 40 percent of the production, with North American Palladium Ltd.’s production of 14 percent and Zimbabwe’s 6 percent contributing substantially as well.
North American Palladium Ltd. reports an increased mine output at lower cost during the first three months in 2018 compared to the same period in 2017:
???Underground mining cost per metric ton (tonne) in the first quarter decreased to $39 compared to $56 in the same period in 2017.
??Total tonnes milled increased to 1,021,147 in the quarter, compared to 458,382 tonnes in the first quarter of 2017, reflecting a return to full-time milling, supplemented by increased underground production, Sheriff Pit ore and additional surface stockpile tonnage.
??The company produced 57,053 ounces of payable palladium at an All-Inclusive Sustaining Cost of U.S. $709 per ounce, compared to 40,252 ounces of palladium in 2017 at an AISC of U.S. $765 per ounce.
North American Palladium Ltd. works a number of operations, including the Lac Des Iles Mines in Thunder Bay, Ontario.
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