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MEI Online: Pyrometallurgy: Latest News: March 28th 2007


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:: Ausmelt Signs Agreement for Continuous Copper Converting

Ausmelt Ltd has signed a Collaborative Agreement with ZTS Non-Ferrous Meals Group (ZTS) to implement Ausmeltís patented continuous copper converting (C3) process at the Houma Smelter in the Shangxi Province of China. The Houma Smelter, which already uses Ausmelt converting technology in batch mode, will be the first to use the C3 process at commercial scale.

The Houma Smelter currently uses Ausmelt Technology for both smelting and converting to produce around 48,000 tonnes a year of copper. It is envisaged that the implementation of continuous converting could double the output of the smelter with a modest investment, mainly relating to increasing the available oxygen supplies.

Ausmelt and ZTS have agreed to work collaboratively on the implementation at Houma and ZTS will assist Ausmelt to market the technology to other users in the future. Following implementation at Houma, the technology will be known as the Ausmelt/ZTS Continuous Copper Converting Process.

Mr Liu Huangyao, General Manager of ZTS, said that ZTS are very pleased to have agreed these actions with Ausmelt. The Agreement provides for a commercial scale trial of the Ausmelt/ZTS C3 process in July 2007 and ZTS intends to move forward to upgrade the Houma plant to 100,000 tonnes a year immediately following the successful completion of the trials.

Ausmelt Managing Director, Mr Paul Abbott said today Ausmeltís top submerged lance technology has already been commercially adopted in batch mode and this move into continuous operation is a significant step forward. C3 provides a level of productivity many times greater than the traditional copper converting technologies and with significant environmental benefits. The global market is very significant and this opportunity for a first commercial adoption at ZTS is a milestone for Ausmelt.




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