The most important of these are aluminium and zinc, which are converted into aluminate, Al(OK,Na) 3, and zincate, Zn(OK,Na) 2, respectively.
The solution of sodium aluminate, containing aluminium oxide and sodium oxide in the molecular proportion of 6 to 1, is next agitated for thirty-six hours with a small quantity of hydrated alumina previously obtained, which causes the liquor to decompose, and some 70% of the aluminium hydroxide to be thrown down.
Potassium aluminate, K 2 Al 2 0 4, is obtained in solution by dissolving aluminium hydrate in caustic potash; it is also obtained, as crystals containing three molecules of water, by fusing alumina with potash, exhausting with water, and crystallizing the solution in vacuo.
Sodium aluminate is obtained in the manufacture of alumina; it is used as a mordant in dyeing, and has other commercial applications.
The two principal minerals are termed alite and celite; according to the best opinion, alite consists of a solid solution of tricalcium aluminate in tricalcium silicate, and celite of a solid solution of dicalcium aluminate in dicalcium silicate.