Nickel from talc in Finland

first_imgMondo Minerals has awarded Tenova Bateman Sub-Saharan Africa the front end engineering design (FEED) contract for the on-site refining of nickel concentrates into a mixed nickel cobalt hydroxide product (MHP) at its existing Vuonos talc concentrator at Talkkitie, Finland.  The award of the FEED contract follows the successful completion of the prefeasibility and definitive feasibility studies for the plant by Tenova Mining and Minerals in Australia, in conjunction with the South African minerals research organization, Mintek.Mondo generates the nickel concentrates as a co-product of talc production, but the long-term economically viable offtake agreement for these has to date been limited, as they contain impurities, which makes treatment through conventional smelting difficult. However, using a bioleaching process developed specifically by Mintek, the plant will treat 12,000 t/y of nickel concentrate from Mondo’s two talc operations in Finland, Sotkamo and Vuonos, to produce approximately 1,000 t/y of nickel in MHP. The MHP is to be sold to nickel refineries or directly to the stainless steel industry.The plant will be highly automated and designed to withstand the tough winter conditions of Finland.Tenova Bateman Sub-Saharan Africa is liaising with Finnish civil contractors, and is assisting in the technical aspects to obtain the Finnish construction permit for the contractor to start with the early civil and earthworks on site.“The Tenova Mining & Minerals Group’s recognized bioleaching processing experience and its well established working relationship with Mintek positioned us well to win this important award,” said Tollie Nel, Managing Director of Tenova Bateman Sub-Saharan Africa.  “The project is also a good example of Tenova Mining & Minerals’ capability to draw on the world class technological expertise across its global organization to deliver a solution that fully satisfies the client’s needs.”last_img

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