Thursday, 24 July 2014

Cornish Mining Sundowner- July

A good crowd this evening at the Chain Locker, despite the late afternoon showers which drove us indoors, despite the heat.

The next Sundowner will be Thursday August 21st, and as always, there is an open invitation to anyone who is in the Falmouth area at that time.

Monday, 21 July 2014

1st Call for Abstracts- Precious Metals '15 and Nickel Processing '15

Abstracts are now invited for two of MEI's small specialised conferences, which will run back to back in May next year. As with all MEI Conferences, papers accepted for presentation will be published in a Proceedings flash drive, available at the conference, and then authors will be invited to submit edited papers to Elsevier Science after the event for peer-review and publication in a special issue of Minerals Engineering. Both conferences are certified for Continuous Professional Development.
May is a great time to be in Cornwall, so plan ahead and aim to spend some time exploring this beautiful area of the world.
Falmouth Bay

Precious Metals '15 will deal with all aspects of the processing of gold and PGM ores, such as flotation, bio and hydrometallurgy and the associated environmental issues. Prof. Jacques Eksteen of Curtin University, Australia, will present the keynote lecture "Innovations in the processing of difficult and low grade gold ores".
The aim of Nickel Processing '15 is to bring together researchers and plant operators, to discuss all aspects of the physical and chemical processing of nickel ores, copper-nickel ores and laterites, and nickel concentrates, including:
• Froth Flotation and other beneficiation methods
• Bio and Hydrometallurgy
• Pyrometallurgy
• Environmental aspects of nickel processing and smelting
The keynote lecture "The future of nickel production - the outlook for nickel sulphide and laterite resource development" will be given by Dr. Andrew Mitchell, Principal Nickel Analyst with Wood Mackenzie, UK.

If you would like to present a paper at either of these meetings, please submit your short abstract by the end of November of this year. If your company is interested in exposure via sponsorship, details for Precious Metals '15 can be found here, and here for Nickel Processing '15.

Sunday, 20 July 2014

Nchanga Copper Mine 1970

While sorting out some old 8mm home movies, I came across a short clip of the Nchanga mine and concentrator, taken in 1970.

Although nowhere need HD quality, it may be of interest to anyone who worked on the mine during that era, and I have now transferred this to YouTube. It shows ore being transported from the huge Nchanga open pit (now no longer in operation) to the massive primary gyratory crusher (still in operation), and then rod and ball mill grinding at the East Mill.  At the West Mill, ore is seen arriving from underground, and the old flotation banks, dewatering and concentrate shipment can also be seen.

Things have moved on a lot in the intervening decades, as I saw during my return to Nchanga two years ago.

Friday, 18 July 2014

Gerald G. Hatch, 1922-2014

Sad to read on MEI Online of the death of one of Canada's great metallurgists, Gerald Hatch, founder of the engineering firm Hatch Limited, which has grown from six people in 1958 to over 11,000 employees in 65 offices worldwide.

If you knew Gerald, we invite you to add comments to this post to record your appreciations and memories.

Book Review: Hydrometallurgy: Fundamentals and Applications

I thank Sadegh Safarzadeh, Associate Editor of Hydrometallurgy, and Assistant Professor at South Dakota School of Mines and Technology, USA for supplying a review of this new text book.

Authored by Professor Michael L. Free, Hydrometallurgy: Fundamentals and Applications provides an in-depth understanding of the fundamentals of hydrometallurgical science and engineering. The book consists of 12 chapters including Introduction, Chemical Fundamentals of Hydrometallurgy, Speciation and Phase Diagrams, Rate Processes, Metal Extraction, Separation of Dissolved Metals, Metal Recovery Processes, Metal Utilization Environmental Issues, Process Design Principles, General Engineering Economics, General Engineering Statistics, and several useful appendices, including laboratory calculations.

The book has been prepared in 432 pages and published in 2013 by John Wiley and Sons, New Jersey. This textbook is arguably the first of its kind, in the sense that it compiles the fundamentals, applications, reference information and analytical tools on the topic of Hydrometallurgy.

The lack of an inclusive textbook for hydrometallurgy has been felt over the past years. While many of the books published so far are invaluable sources for hydrometallurgy, there was no single book that covered all of the aspects in hydrometallurgy from science to engineering. At the same time, these books appeared to be excellent on some topics, but weak on the other topics. In his book, Professor Free has given equal importance to each of the fundamental topics in hydrometallurgy. Among the important topics that are often weakly written in many related books, if not neglected, are the biochemical and electrochemical reaction kinetics, flowsheet development, and environmental hydrometallurgy. These topics are all covered in this textbook. At the end of each chapter, there is a set of problems that are directly related to the contents of the preceding chapter(s). This book is suitable for both undergraduate and graduate students in the field of mineral processing and extractive metallurgy. Also, it is recommended for mineral processing engineers who work in industry.

Professor Michael Free is with the department of Metallurgical Engineering at the University of Utah. He is a well-known hydrometallurgist, with significant contributions to electrometallurgy, engineering pedogogy, and web-based teaching.

We invite further comments on this volume.

Thursday, 17 July 2014

Selfrag's KP van der Wielen calls in

Dr. Klaas van der Wielen, of Selfrag, Switzerland, called in at MEI this morning. He is in Cornwall for his stag celebrations, prior to his wedding next month in The Netherlands.

With Klaas at MEI
We last saw him in Cape Town in April, where he presented an interesting paper at Comminution '14 on electro- fragmentation of particles, a technology which has consistently been demonstrated at batch scale but which has yet to be proven on a commercial basis for large scale continuous processing. There are exciting times ahead, however. Work is progressing on the pilot plant to prove the viability of the technology and there are many potential projects in the pipeline, including copper-gold ores, iron ores, as well as comminution of incinerator slags and silicon ingots.

A full description of the technology can be found on MEI Online and we look forward to updates at Comminution '16.