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|The largest reserves of palygorskite in the world are located in Anhui and Jiangsu Provinces in East Central China. The deposits are Middle Miocene in age and range from 3 to 6 m in thickness. The deposits are the alteration product of basaltic volcanic ash. The Chinese Geological Survey estimates the palygorskite reserves are in excess of 200 million tons. The elongate particle shape results in unique colloidal properties. Large quantities are exported to Japan, Taiwan, Southeast Asia, New Zealand, Australia, and West and Gulf Coasts of the United States. The markets include agricultural carriers, paint, joint tape compounds, animal feed binders, catalyst support, drilling muds, and suspending agents for chemicals, pharmaceuticals, and medicines. The viscosity is high and the quartz content is generally 5% or less.|