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ALTA 2010 - Nickel, Cobalt, Copper & Uranium & Gold Conference
Perth, Australia
May 24-29 2010

ALTA 2010 was held at the Sheraton Hotel, Perth, Western Australia. It was well attended with close to 300 attendees from over 20 countries, The conference was officially opened by Richard Sellers, Director General Department of Mines and Petroleum for Western Australia, who focused on measures belong taken to accelerate the approval process for new projects. The Key Note address at the Nickel-Cobalt Dinner was given by Peter Lilly, Director General Minerals Down Under Flagship, CSIRO, who highlighted the challenge of maintaining a strong position in research and development in the face of competition from developing countries. The parallel 27 booth exhibition attracted exhibitors from 9 countries.

The Nickel/Cobalt/Copper Sessions featured a Forum on “Pressure Leaching” which included papers on the design and construction of autoclave and ancillary facilities, safety and toxicity issues, process design and optimization, and plant commissioning. The sessions also included new processes for the treatment of laterites and sulphides, and extensive coverage of new developments in solvent extraction and ion exchange. Featured operations and projects included the NorthMet Polymetallic Project in USA and the Sepon Copper Operation in Laos.

The featured Forum in the uranium sessions focused on “ion Exchange” and included resin development and review of available ion exchange systems. Other topics presented included solvent extraction processes and equipment developments, bio-oxidation, liquid-solid separation, pilot plant operation and reagent supply logistics. Featured operations and projects included A-CAP’s Letlhakane Project in Botswana, Paladin’s new Kayelakera operation in Malawi, and the Marenica Energy project in Namibia. Uranerz presented an overview of the “Licensing Status of New Uranium ISR Mines in the USA”.

For the first time, the annual ALTA event included Gold technical sessions which took the form of a Symposium on “Technology Developments and Trends”. The symposium included papers on mineralogy, testwork, ore sorting, gravity treatment, fine grinding, cyanidation, alternative lixiviants, refractory ore processing, CIP, IX, bio-oxidation, pressure oxidation and an overview of recent technology developments.

A practically oriented post conference short course on “Uranium Ore Processing” was presented by Alan Taylor, Principal of ALTA.

The conference proceedings are now available from ALTA Metallurgical Services (see web site www.altamet.com.au).

ALTA is now planning and receiving abstracts for the ALTA 2011 Nickel-Cobalt-Copper, Uranium and Gold Conference to be held in Perth, Western Australia during May 23-28 2011. It will feature forums on “Hydroprocessing of Nickel, Cobalt and Copper Sulphides” and “Uranium Leaching Processes”, as well as a special symposium on “Gold Cyanide Detox and Recovery”.

Alan Taylor, Managing Director & Conference Convener




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