ores from which the metal aluminum is obtained. There are a large number of minerals and rocks containing aluminum; however, only a few of them can be used for extracting metallic aluminum. Bauxites are the most widely used raw materials for aluminum. Initially a semifinished product, alumina (A12O3) is extracted from the ores, and the metallic aluminum is produced electrolytically from the alumina. Nepheline-syenites as well as nepheline-apatites are also used as aluminum ores. These minerals are simultaneously used as a source of phosphates. Other minerals which can be used as a source of aluminum include alunites, leucitic lavas (the mineral leucite), labradorites, anorthosites, and high-alumina clays and kaolins, as well as cyanitic, sillimanitic, and andalusitic schists.
In the capitalist and developing nations, virtually the only ores used for producing aluminum are bauxites. In the USSR, in addition to bauxites, the nepheline-syenites and nepheline-apatites have gained important practical significance.