Zhezkazgan Smelter, Kazakhmys Smelting LLC (a part of Kazakhmys Holding LLC) has resumed, under the production modernisation programme, simultaneous operation of two Ore Thermal Furnaces (OTF).
It is to be recalled that Zhezkazgan Smelter was transferred into single-furnace operational mode in 2009, due to insufficient feed volume required for the full capacity load operation.
After being suspended for several years, the new furnace operates now at full capacity. The restart became possible as a result of the Group`s raw material base expansion, including commissioning of new mining and concentration facilities of KazMinerals LLC.
In the course of the restart`s preparation, in order to decrease manual labour share, new Tap Hole Drilling Machines –ТМТ (Germany) – have been installed for OTF taphole automated drilling and plugging.
In line with the production processes modernisation programme, new equipment has been purchased to provide for operational quality enhancements. In particular, reinforced-concrete electrolysis tanks have been replaced by polymer-concrete tanks (China), weighing batchers and cooling tanks for anode conversion (Finland) have been installed in order to increase capacity and ensure uninterrupted casting of copper anode. A new cooling tower (Russia) for melting facilities has been built as well.
Additionally, a special-purpose supercharger equipped with variable-frequency drives (Russia) has been commissioned in the sulphuric-acid shop for efficient off-gas evacuation during metal conversion. Preliminary works preceding the second OTF commissioning have been ongoing throughout the current year.
- Commissioning of the second OTF at Zhezkazgan Smelter made it possible to create about 600 work positions, - commented Adilet Barmenkulov, CEO of Kazakhmys Smelting LLC. – Total number of personnel under two-furnaces operational mode will exceed 2,000. At the moment, Smelter`s design capacity is equal to 220,000 tpa of copper cathode. As a reminder, Zhezkazgan Smelter is featured by a high degree of copper to cathode end-to-end recovery – over 98%.