The market demands a constant supply of these metals. The question is, how to do it with depleting resource grades, finer mineralogy, and the use of non-sulfide and recycled feed materials.

New and efficient technologies are constantly being developed to mine, concentrate, and extract more complex, less-pure feed materials. Using them presents the industry with a number of technical challenges: treating high silica and halogen content in the feed; recovering value-added secondary elements; and meeting increasingly stringent plant-hygiene and environmental regulations.

Like businesses everywhere, mining and processing facilities must maximize financial returns over the life of their projects. This, while complying with rigorous safety and environmental constraints during every phase of project development: from investigating lead, zinc, and tin properties at the scoping level; to conducting feasibility studies to direct resources to the production and optimization of mine and mineral processing facilities. The best return on investment always comes from managing the project with technical, cost, and schedule certainty; identifying risk and mitigating it throughout the development process.


Process design and development

Today's lead, zinc, and tin producers need proven approaches to designing and building robust commercial plants on schedule, on budget, and with excellent safety records. They need partners who are leaders in the diversified field of metallurgy.

Where vendor capabilities are limited, custom processing equipment is a must-have. These can be custom designs of autoclaves, flash and electric furnaces, fluidized bed reactors, gas-handling systems, and material-handling systems. Our strong process base is a key differentiator in this marketplace.


Smelter operations face increasing demands for improved process efficiency, cost-effectiveness, and environmental performance. Our pyrometallurgy group can take both greenfield and brownfield projects from conceptual development through to construction, start-up, and ramp-up to capacity.


Effective hydrometallurgy needs experienced hands in the design, construction, and operation of modern hydrometallurgical facilities. Each one is created individually, tailored to match the most appropriate and cost-effective process technology at each step of the flow sheet. Clients rely on us to help develop complex, novel flow sheets.


Khutso Sekgota and Herman Strauss_

Key trends shaping the mining and metals sector in Southern Africa, Part 5: Maximizing value from capital spend

Khutso Sekgota and Herman Strauss
Organizations are shifting focus and adapting to changes shaping global industries, resulting in an increased focus on sustainability, the adoption of digital tools and artificial intelligence, and adaptation to global supply chain changes. These shifts are affecting companies across all sectors, especially in mining and metals. In Southern Africa, these trends have been amplified by infrastructure challenges, reduced risk appetite, and limited capital flows.
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Technical papers

The Ideal Zinc Refinery Flow Sheet

Author(s) R.M.G. Cooper, B. Krysa, S.B. Poulter
Conference of Metallurgists 2010, Lead and Zinc, Hosted by METSOC, October 4, 2010, Vancouver, Canada.
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