The refractory materials industry provides the largest commercial market for nonmetallurgical-grade bauxite. Refractory-grade bauxite is prepared from bauxites having low iron, titania, and alkali content by calcining at temperatures near 1,650 deg. C. Although there are substantial bauxite reserves in the world, premium-grade bauxite ores suitable for use in refractory applications are limited to only a few specific sources, primarily in Guyana and the People's Republic of China. Consumption of bauxite for refractory use is closely associated with the production and consumption of primary metals, in particular iron and steel. Barring major disruptions within the principal producer nations, sufficient supplies of refractory bauxite will be available to meet world demand well into the next century, and raw material costs will continue to determine the availability of markets for bauxite-based refractory products.