Isonex, Inc. Chemical Engineers and Consultants

22401 Felicia Drive
Briarcliff, Texas 78669 USA

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Ph# 512-264-2802
Fax 512-264-2950

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Isonex's main business activity is the preparation of technical and economic feasibility studies for the production of soda ash. In North America, 97% of all soda ash is produced by refining soda ores occurring in California and Wyoming.

Trona is refined into soda ash (sodium carbonate), a main ingredient in the production of glass, detergents, and many chemicals.

The main commercial product manufactured from trona ores is sodium carbonate, also known as soda ash. This is accomplished by calcining natural trona, that is heating the ore driving out the carbon dioxide and water as gases. The calcinate is a mixture of sodium carbonate, calcium carbonate, and silicates. The sodium carbonate is leached with hot water leaving behind the insoluble calcium and silicon compounds, which are separated by filtration. The sodium carbonate is recovered from the water solution by crystallizing sodium carbonate monohydrate in large evaporators.

The sodium carbonate monohydrate crystals are separated by centrifugation and the water of hydration is driven out by drying forming the final commercial product, dense soda ash. The term dense refers to the higher bulk density.

Most of known trona deposits occur in Sweetwater County Wyoming where four firms mine and refine the trona to soda ash, caustic soda, and other derivatives. Other significant trona deposits occur in California, China, Turkey, and East Africa.

About 4.9 million short tons of American soda ash were exported in 2003 from the United States.