Hydrometallurgy – Overview

OMC has fostered a highly skilled team specialising in the field of hydrometallurgy. This group is lead by a world renowned Hydrometallurgist with extensive operating experience in projects spanning the globe

OMC understand the issues in complex hydrometallurgical processing with expertise in a wide range of commodities including: uranium, nickel, copper, cobalt, platinum group metals, gold and the safe disposal of metalloids that co-exist with these target metals.

 

OMC routinely provide the following services:

 

  • Sample selection assistance
  • Testwork specification and pilot plant supervision
  • Modelling and mass balancing
  • Studies and design
  • Audits / due diligence
  • Client / owners team support
  • Commissioning

 

(Note: Image is courtesy of NONOX Demonstration Plant Autoclave at Teck’s CESL Facility)

minerals consultants
hydrometallurgy

NICKEL / COBALT

 

OMC have experience in leaching nickel and cobalt from both lateritic and sulphide deposits via atmospheric, pressure oxidation or metathesis process. The leach products can be taken through purification using solvent extraction, precipitation and or ion exchange process to crude and pure semi-products (such as hydroxides, carbonates, salts etc. or refined to metals (using divided cells for example).

COPPER

 

OMC have experience in leaching copper from low and high grade oxide deposits via heap leaching and tank leaching, as well as sulphide concentrate leaching via low and high temperature pressure oxidation process. Copper concentrate recovered to metal, via SXEW or direct EW is the standard processing route; however, OMC are also involved in producing super concentrates from dirty concentrates with the concomitant cleanup and removal of uranium, cobalt, arsenic and other deleterious elements from copper sulphide concentrates.

 

(Note: Image is courtesy of NONOX Demonstration Plant Autoclave at Teck’s CESL Facility)

metallurgy consultants
metallurgy consultants

PLATINUM GROUP METALS (PGM)

 

OMC has design and operating experience in the refining, to 4N purity, of platinum group metals and gold. Feed sources are typically concentrates from mattes and secondary feed stocks (e.g. spent autocatalysts).

 

Processes include classical chloride systems and newer technologies incorporating substituted quaternary ammonia salts (SQAS). OMC has adopted testwork scoping and management roles in this work.

 

OMC work with major mining houses as well as junior companies and are familiar with designing to air quality standards set out by NIOSH / ACGIH.

 

(Note: Image is courtesy of NONOX Demonstration Plant Autoclave at Teck’s CESL Facility)

URANIUM

 

OMC has uranium design and operating experience with calcrete, sandstone, granitic and sulphide hosted deposits across the globe and can assist in any stage of uranium project from scoping level to design. Through testwork, analysis, detailed mass balance modelling and experience, processing options are assessed to determine the best extraction methods and optimal process flowsheet. We routinely scope and supervise testwork programs, as well as pilot plant trials, using acid or alkali leaching methods followed by solvent extraction or ion exchange concentration.

 

OMC assists the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) in developing countries.

 

OMC can specify testwork, supervise pilot plant trials and interpret data to ensure the correct flowsheet selection for the project. The engineering implementation of the flowsheet is also important. OMC can incorporate all its practical experience to assist clients through engineering, materials selections and commissioning to ensure the project is a success.

 

(Note: Image is courtesy of NONOX Demonstration Plant Autoclave at Teck’s CESL Facility)

metallurgy consultants

Audit, Study, Improve