Task 1

Process summary Acid pressure leach slurry from the flash leftdown system of the acid pressure leach is gravity-fed to the first series of five Counter Current Decantation (CCD) thickener tanks. The slurry is washed with neutralised barren solution from the barrens neutralisation circuit. The underflow slurry from the CCD is neutralised with lime before being discharged to a tailings dam. The liquid that overflows from the CCD circuit is stored in a storage pond for nine hours before being forwarded to the partial neutralisation section. The overflow is then neutralised using 50 % lime slurry under aeration oxygenation conditions for the removal of iron, aluminium and other impurities. The overflow from the partial neutralisation unit is forwarded to the mixed sulphide precipitation (MSP) unit for the recovery of the metals. In MSP unit, the solution is reacted with hydrogen sulphide gas to precipitate nickel and cobalt. The overflow from the thickener is transferred to the barrens neutralisation circuit, neutralised with lime and thickened before being forwarded to the tailings neutralisation circuit. The discharged from the MSP is thickened and the underflow is filtered, washed before being fed to the mixed sulphide leaching (MSL) circuit. The repulped mixed sulphides are leached and the slurry is then discharged and cooled into a flash tank. The slurry is then thickened and the underflow is filtered to remove the unleached sulphides. The overflow and filtrate are passed through polishing filters and carbon columns before being fed into to the copper ion exchange (CIE) circuit. In CIE, the solution is contacted with copper specific risen. The raffinate form CIE is discharged to the zinc solvent extraction (ZSE) circuit. In the ZSE unit, the extraction of zinc and residual manganese takes place utilising Di-2 Ethyl Hexyl Phosphoric Acid. The raffinate is then forwarded to the cobalt solvent extraction (CSE) whiles the loaded organic scrubbed with nickel solution to reduce the carry over into the strip solution. The raffinate from the ZSE unit is treated in the CSE circuit to remove cobalt from the nickel solution using Cyanex 272. The solution is then adjusted to reach the required concentrations for the hydrogen reduction. The resultant nickel powder then flashed to atmospheric holding tank. The raffinate from the nickel copper ion exchange is discharged to the cobalt hydrogen reduction circuit. The resulting powder is flashed to atmospheric holding tank.


Table 1: Equipment Summary Specification for the Counter Current Decantation (CCD) Circuit

Equipment number E-1 E-2 E-3 E-5 E-4 E-11 E-13 E-14 E-15 E-12 E-6 E-8 E-9 E-10

Equipment type Thickener 1 Thickener 2 Thickener 3 Thickener 4 Thickener 5 Mixer 1 Mixer 2 Mixer 3 Mixer 4 Mixer 5 Pump 1 Pump 2 Pump 3 Pump 4

Required specification Not available Not available Not available Not available Not available Not available Not available Not available Not available Not available Not available Not available Not available Not available



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