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MEI Online: Commodities: Metallic Ores: Platinum Group Metals: Latest News: March 4th 2003

 
    
:: Anglo Platinum Announces Third MLA System  

Anglo Platinum officially announced the acquisition of their third Mineral Liberation Analyser at an MLA open day held in Johannesburg during February 2003.

Held at the Anglo Platinum Research Centre in Germiston, the open day was jointly organised by Anglo Platinums Head of Mineralogical Research Dr Robert Schouwstra and JKMRC MLA System Manager Dr Ying Gu, in conjunction with Carl Zeiss Pty Ltd, the South African agent for the FEI Company.

Representatives from some of Southern Africas leading mining and mineral research organisations attended the open day. Among the organisations represented were Impala Platinum, Lonmin, Mintek, Anglovaal Mining, Anglo American Research Laboratories, Lakefield Research, BHP Billiton and the Geological Survey of Botswana.

FEIs latest Qanta 600 MLA unit was used for the demonstration. Ying Gu said an objective of the meeting was to demonstrate the capabilities and importantly the flexibility of the MLA system. He said one of the key questions of representatives at the meeting was how to set up and analyse a new ore type.

We demonstrated how easy it is to set up a new ore analysis, Dr Gu said. People were thinking that it was a difficult machine to operate, but now that they have seen it they know how easy it is to use and generate the data they want.

Dr Schouwstra said in his opening address to representatives at the meeting that Anglo Platinum had made a great deal of progress in ore characterisation using the MLA system and that the third MLA would increase Anglo Platinums analytical capacity. Their third unit the latest Qanta 600 is planned for installation in April 2003 and follows previous MLA installations at the Anglo Platinum Research Centre in 2000 and 2002.

The system is equipped with backscatter electron (BSE) imaging and energy dispersive X-ray (EDX) capabilities and, combined with the MLA software package, enables MLA measurement, data analysis and presentation. High speed and high resolution BSE imaging, EDX analysis and state-of-the-art image analysis result in accurate mineral identification for particles ranging from 2 to 600 microns. Microscope control and MLA measurement software runs under MS Windows 2000.

The output of mineral liberation statistics and reports has been designed to assist ore source evaluation, circuit design and optimisation. Data can be expressed in terms of the sample as a whole or limited to selected particles such as those containing an element of interest.

A special module allows correction for the stereological error using a technique recently developed at the JKMRC.

Dr Gu said Anglo Platinums acquisition of the third MLA illustrates their confidence in the system.

 

   

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Contact:
Dr Ying Gu
JKMRC
+61 7 3365 5919
y.gu@mailbox
.uq.edu.au

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