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MEI Online: MEI Conferences: Nickel Processing '15: Introduction

Home General Introduction Conference Report Conference Programme Published Papers Delegate List Photos Contacts Precious Metals '17  


This, the 4th International Symposium on Processing of Nickel Ores & Concentrates (Nickel Processing '15), was organised by MEI. Media sponsors were International Mining.

Nickel-bearing ores are seldom in the league of mega-tonnage such as occur in the porphyry copper deposits. The scale and life-of-mine of nickel operations are thus much more limited, and one has to maximize the asset worth by processing efficiency rather than volume. Whereas the nickel market has started to stabilize after the recession of 2008/9, it will be a while before we see the record highs of a few years ago when the metal price peaked at $25/lb. Although nickel operations are often complemented by other payable metals such as copper and the platinum-group elements, under the current market conditions, every gain that can be sustainably made on recovery and grade enhances the business case. It is intended that the conference will attract contributions from experts around the world, to provide a forum for discussion of common problems and possible performance opportunities.


The aim of this conference was to bring together researchers and plant operators, to discuss all aspects of the physical and chemical processing of nickel ores, copper-nickel ores and laterites, and nickel concentrates, including:

  • Froth Flotation and other beneficiation methods
  • Bio and Hydrometallurgy
  • Pyrometallurgy
  • Environmental aspects of nickel processing and smelting

    Delegates at a previous conference



The keynote lecture "The future of nickel production - the outlook for nickel sulphide and laterite resource development" was given by Dr. Andrew Mitchell, Principal Nickel Analyst with Wood Mackenzie, UK.

Andrew Mitchell joined Wood Mackenzie in 1995 and has more than 20 years of industry and research experience, primarily in extractive metallurgy process development, and for the last 15 years has been following developments in the nickel industry. Andrew is the author of the "Nickel Industry Cost Service" and the "Nickel Intermediates Service". He has visited many nickel operations around the world and is a frequent speaker at nickel conferences.


Andy Mitchell

Andrew holds a B.Sc (hons) in Mineral Processing Technology and a Ph.D. in Extractive Metallurgy, both from the Camborne School of Mines, UK and is a Chartered Engineer. Prior to joining Wood Mackenzie, he worked as a Project Leader and development metallurgist for Johnson Matthey and Billiton.



"This intimate conference [Nickel Processing '12] was excellent, smoothly run ... with a good range of papers covering most aspects of nickel processing of both laterites and sulphides. The venue was first-rate and the conference set aside the right amount of time to meet and have discussions with fellow delegates."
Anne Oxley, Alyssum Ventures, UK

Click to view the conference report, programme and delegate list from previous Nicel Processing conferences:

"Small conference [Nickel Processing 05] - big impact"
Dr. Michael King, Director, Metallurgical Technology, Falconbridge Ltd, Canada

More testimonials



Nickel Processing '15 was certified for Continuing Professional Development.



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