THE BOURSE WHISPERER: Vanadium near-producer Atlantic Ltd has successfully completed the hot commissioning of a rotary kiln at its wholly-owned Windimurra vanadium facility in Western Australia.
The company said it considers the firing of the kiln marks the achievement of a key milestone as it prepares to commence production at Windimurra.
The rotary kiln is an important facet of the production chain at Windimurra as its function will be the roasting the magnetite ore, which allows vanadium to be extracted through the process of leaching.
Over recent months Atlantic has mined around 240,000 tonnes of vanadium bearing ore, which it has stockpiled for processing through the new plant.
Stockpiled magnetite concentrate ready for roasting in the kiln. Source: Company announcement
Already the company has been able to process 58,000 tonnes of mined ore through the crushing, milling and beneficiation (CMB) plant to produce magnetite concentrate.
Stockpiled magnetite concentrate has been fed into the kiln, marking the commencement of hot commissioning.
Atlantic managing director Michael Minosora said process commissioning of the remaining facility will commence as soon as vanadium solution concentrations reach target levels.
“The operations team continues to improve rates of availability and levels of production of the CMB plant and a specialist engineering company has been appointed to assist in the resolution of the remaining commissioning work at the CMB plant,” Minosora said in the company’s announcement to the Australian Securities Exchange.
Atlantic said it expects to commence first production of ferrovanadium in the December calendar quarter of 2011.
It is currently screening existing fines material at Windimurra in preparation for transportation to storage sheds in Geraldton.
Calcined iron fines shipments are expected to take place in December of 2011.