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MEI Online: Commodities: Metallic Ores: Copper: Conference Reports: ALTA 2009


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ALTA 2009 - Nickel/Cobalt, Copper & Uranium Conference
Perth, Australia
May 20-25 2009

ALTA 2009 was held at the Sheraton Hotel, Perth, Western Australia from May 25 to 30th 2009. Despite the recent financial turmoil, it was well attended with 200 attendees from 15 countries, The conference was officially opened by David Weight, General Manager of the Cobalt Development Institute, who gave a presentation on “Cobalt: Future Challenges”. The Key Note address at the Nickel-Cobalt Dinner was given by Bill Turner, President and CEO of Anvil Mining on “Building a Mining Company in an Emerging Challenging Country”. The parallel 26 booth exhibition attracted exhibitors from 7 countries.

The Nickel/Cobalt Sessions featured a Symposium on “Extraction and Refining of Cobalt”, and included papers on treatment of laterites by PAL and heap leaching, PAL equipment and materials of construction, the treatment of sulphides by ore sorting, bio-oxidation and pressure oxidation, nickel pig iron production in China, new process technology and energy optimization. Featured operations and projects included Murrin Murrin Heap Leaching in Australia, Mindoro Nickel Project in the Philippines, Gladstone Nickel PAL Project in Australia, NorthMet Polymetallic Project in USA, Mesaba Nickel-Copper Project in USA, and cobalt projects in Central Africa.

The Copper Sessions included a forum on the “Developments in Copper Electrowinning’’ and presentations on heap and vat leaching, solvent extraction reagents and equipment, cementation, pressure oxidation, SX fire protection, fine grinding, molybdenite processing, and future global prospects for copper. Featured operations and projects included the Wetar Heap Leaching Project in Indonesia, Huogeqi Pilot Heap in Inner Mongolia, and the CESL Pressure-Oxidation Plant in Brazil.

The featured forum in the uranium sessions focused on uranium heap leaching. Other topics presented included solvent extraction and ion exchange, uranium ore processing, in-situ leaching, alkaline leach flowsheet simulation, agitation, thickening, mineralogy and tailings. Featured operations and projects included Areva agitation leach operations and heap leach development in Niger, and the Honeymoon ISL Project in Australia.

A post conference short course on Solvent Extraction and Its Application to Copper, Uranium and Nickel-Cobalt was presented by Alan Taylor 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 2010 Nickel-Cobalt-Copper, Uranium and Gold Conference to be held in Perth, Western Australia during May 24-29 2010. ALTA is also presenting short courses on Uranium, Heap Leaching, Nickel Laterites, Copper Leaching, Copper SX-EW in Toronto, Canada, on Sept 14-18 2009.

Alan Taylor, Managing Director & Conference Convener




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