Codelco says Ministro Hales roaster still at ‘start-up’ stage

Chilean-based Codelco has confirmed the roasting complex of its Ministro Hales division is still in a “start-up phase”, having not yet reached its full capacity.

Chilean-based Codelco has confirmed the roasting complex of its Ministro Hales division is still in a “start-up phase”, having not yet reached its full capacity.

The roaster, which is key to reducing the high arsenic levels in Ministro Hales concentrates, has experienced technical problems since it started to operate in mid-2014.

“It is still in the start-up stage,” the world’s largest copper producer said, confirming a comment made to Reuters.

Codelco added that it will inform the market once the roaster reaches its full capacity.

Earlier this year, Codelco’s ceo Nelson Pizarro said that the roaster was “going well”, following planned maintenance in November.

http://www.metalbulletin.com/Article/3398304/Search/Codelcos-Ministro-Hales-roaster-will-undergo-planned.html

According to him, it was operating almost 20 hours per day, producing 1,000-1,200 tonnes of calcine.

The company did not say whether the roaster is still operating at that level.

Concentrates from the Ministro Hales division typically have an arsenic content level significantly above 0.5%.

That means they have to be treated at the roasting complex to reduce arsenic levels and make them suitable for processing at Codelco’s Chuquicamata to produce copper cathodes.

Given the issues with the roaster, Codelco has been blending high-arsenic concentrates with clean feeds so it is able to sell the material in China.

There were rumours in the market this week that Chinese smelters have signed a long-term contract with Codelco for blended materials.

Danielle Assalve
danielle.assalve@metalbulletin.com
Twitter: @dassalve_mb

What to read next
Any bolstering effect on US ferrous scrap exports from the up-month in February’s domestic trade will be tempered in the immediate aftermath of two earthquakes in Turkey — the country’s largest importing region — on Monday, February 6
Steel trading and production have come to a halt in the eastern Turkish region of Iskenderun following a devastating earthquake that hit the region on Monday February 6 and put mills in the area under force majeure, sources told Fastmarkets on Tuesday
A 120-day closure of four Illinois dams scheduled for 2023 will disrupt barge shipments and have potentially both negative and positive impacts on scrap and finished steel products from Canada to Texas
Market participants are cautiously optimistic about a rebound in iron ore concentrate premiums, with steelmakers around the world set to ramp-up production in line with an anticipated increase in demand for steel products, Fastmarkets understands
General Motors (GM) is investing $650 million to develop the Thacker Pass mine in Nevada, the largest known source of lithium in the US and the third largest in the world
We use cookies to provide a personalized site experience.
By continuing to use & browse the site you agree to our Privacy Policy.
Proceed