Thanks for your reply.
I did think of using a pressure cooker, but as I explored this idea, I realized that a) most pressure cookers were rated for pressures much lower than the pressures experienced in the industry, and that b) a pressure cooker is essentially a container in which water and some food is heated, and as steam develops the pressure increases, increasing the temperature at which the remaining water can sustain a liquid state, until the pressure passes the desired pressure, at which point a valve is opened and steam is released, decreasing the pressure until the valve closes.
When I thought about this, I realized that all I needed was some sealed container which could remain structurally stable in the presence of such pressure (that is, a container that would not explode at the high pressures I thought would be necessary) - the valve to relieve pressure was not necessary, and thus the expense of a pressure cooker was not necessary (the presence of such a pressure-sensitive valve makes a pressure cooker a pressure cooker instead of just a pot; so if I don't need the valve, I don't really need the pressure cooker).
In fact, as I was browsing the kitchen appliances, I stumbled upon the idea that I could use a teakettle as such a container - it would allow me to fill with ore, NaOH, and water through the top, heat from the bottom, then pour through the spout into the settling chamber. The main problem with this was that I needed to seal the spout to the settling chamber somehow; I decided to use galvanized iron pipe with teflon sealant. Shortly after this, Borek informed me that the teakettle was unlikely to remain structurally stable with the pressures I described (that is, he told me it would explode, as seen above). Furthermore, he informed me that the higher pressures were not entirely necessary to the process; rather, that I could sustain the liquid state of the water using the boiling point elevation that occurs with high concentrations of solute.
Taking his advice, I increased the concentration of my NaOH solution to 4g NaOH/g water (=4kg NaOH/kg water = 100mol NaOH/kg water = 100m). I believe that this solution, heated to around 180ºC, successfully digested my ore. Granted, of course, I then poured it through the coffee filter which was eaten away by the extremely alkaline solution, and the trial failed.
In any case, as I stated in my last post, my current problem is the difficulty in acquisition of a suitable filter (capable of filtering a 100m NaOH solution at 180ºC; I expect red mud minimum particle sizes to be around 0.5 microns). At present, I'm debating with myself as to whether I should just spend the $122 and get the 0.1 micron pore size, 47 mm diameter GE Polypropylene Membrane pack of 100 (http://www.osmolabstore.com/OsmoLabPage.dll?BuildPage&1&1&402
). I know, I know, it's just $122... I don't want to sound like I'm whining, but I really don't want to spend $122, figure out it doesn't work, spend another $122, and so on, until I spend a few thousand, etc.
Anyway, that's the basic summary of this thread.
[Edit- btw, your avatar is entertaining.]