De-bottlenecking program underway at the Kamoa-Kakula Mining Complex
Zijin News - The Kamoa-Kakula Mining Complex has set a new production record in the third quarter of 2022, with 98,000 tonnes of copper in concentrate produced. The project also set a monthly production record of 34,000 tonnes of copper in concentrate in September.
The mining complex’s concentrators milled approximately 5.0 million tonnes of ore year-to-date and about 2.1 million tonnes during the third quarter at an average feed grade of 5.6% copper. It produced approximately 241,000 tonnes of copper in concentrate during the nine months ended September 30, 2022, and 56,000 and 87,000 tonnes in Q1 and Q2, respectively.
An additional concentrate thickener under construction
The Phase 1 and Phase 2 concentrator plants are now operating at an annualized production rate of approximately 400,000 tonnes of copper in concentrate, and have periodically exceeded this rate daily during the third quarter. The de-bottlenecking program is on track to boost Kamoa Copper’s annual production to approximately 450,000 tonnes of copper in concentrate by the second quarter of 2023.
The Kamoa Copper process engineering team, together with a number of internationally-recognized external metallurgy specialists, is investigating new technologies to economically recover additional copper units from the tailings stream of the Phase 1 and 2 concentrators, thereby potentially increasing overall recovery above the design target of 86%.
Phase 3 expansion well underway
Construction is complete on the Phase 3 box cut and decline ramp at the Kamoa 1 and Kamoa 2 underground mines, while excavation of the twin declines to access the new mining areas is advancing well.
Upon commencement of Phase 3 production in the fourth quarter of 2024, the Kamoa-Kakula Mining Complex will have a processing capacity in excess of 14 million tonnes per annum. Phase 3 is expected to increase copper production capacity to approximately 600,000 tonnes per annum. This production rate will position the Kamoa-Kakula Mining Complex as the third-largest copper mining operation in the world.
Employees installing new scavenger-cleaner flotation cells at the Phase 1 concentrator
Pursuing green, low-carbon growth
Kamoa-Kakula seeks to reduce GHG emissions across its operations while supplying the world with minerals critical to the transition toward electrification.
The project’s Phase 3 expansion includes the refurbishment of turbine #5 at the Inga 2 hydroelectric power station. The turbine will supply an additional 178-megawatts of clean hydroelectric power to the national grid, which is sufficient to meet the power requirements of the Phase 3 concentrator, the direct-to-blister flash smelter, as well as provide spare capacity for future expansions.
The Kamoa-Kakula smelter is designed to use technology supplied by Metso Outotec of Espoo, Finland, and to meet the International Finance Corporation’s (IFC) emissions standards. The blister anode copper produced from Kamoa-Kakula’s smelter is expected to be one of the lowest carbon emitters per tonne of copper produced in the world.
Translator: Lin Xindi Reviser: Li Yuanxing Editor-in-Chief: Wang Jie