With the transition to regular refining operations at the ATC Ferrotungsten Project in Vietnam, Hazelwood Resources has moved to quarterly production reporting. A total of 254 tonnes of ferrotungsten metal was lifted from the furnace during the June quarter.
The average product grade continues to exceed 78% tungsten content with the impurity levels compatible with all end-user requirements.
Process yield to date is at approximately 96%, with a targeted metal yield of 99%. Since commencing operations in April 2013, the majority of the temporary metal losses have been due to smelter fines. The fines have, however been captured in the off-gas handling systems and the dust from the baghouse is stored on site.
The operational management team is developing solutions for recovery of valuable tungsten metal from the smelter fines in the near-term and better management of the fines in the feedstock.
During the June quarter unit reagent consumption was in-line with management’s expectations. Cooling system modifications have been effective, allowing the furnace to operate during even the most demanding seasons of the year when ambient temperatures and humidity are at their extremes.
To improve operational stability, an additional 15 tonnes of new ferrotungsten product (representing about 11 tonnes contained tungsten) from the June quarter’s production was added to the furnace liner. Subsequent operation of the furnace during July showed improved furnace stability (shell temperatures). Recently, batches of ferrotungsten assaying up to 81% tungsten have been lifted from the furnace.
At June 30, approximately 115 tonnes of ferrotungsten metal representing 86.6 tonnes of contained tungsten metal remained in the furnace liner. A further 26.6 tonnes of contained tungsten metal was present as accumulated smelter fines which are stored on site.
Hazelwood says ATC ferrotungsten continues to emerge as a reliable, compliant and truly global brand. There were 275 tonnes of ferrotungsten dispatched during the June quarter. The product was distributed to the usual range of mainstream end-users in Japan and Europe. New business was concluded with a customer based in India.
Hazelwood Resources is a new specialty metals producer with a majority stake in the ATC Ferrotungsten Project in Vietnam. Ferrotungsten is used in the production of high speed steels, tool steel and temperature resistant alloys.
The ATC Ferrotungsten plant is the largest capacity, most advanced facility of its type outside China, with a highly experienced operations and management team. High quality product from ATC meets the specifications of end-users around the world and the brand has achieved a truly global presence. www.hazelwood.com.au