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Kalium Lakes targets July commercial production

The first sulphate of potash (SOP) producer in Australia, Kalium Lakes, is hopeful of commercial production by July.

Kalium Lakes chief executive officer Len Jubber said the company would be hoping to take advantage of the current “extremely strong SOP price environment”.

“Recent equipment testing and the production of SOP have been able to validate the overall process chemistry and plant design,” he said.

“We are now focussed on systematically addressing the remaining bottlenecks in the plant and progressively increasing production.

“Plant operations during 2022 will be variable taking into account our need to conduct further mechanical debottlenecking activities and build KTMS inventory.”

The current focus remains on optimising flotation recoveries. Key equipment testing is expected to continue during June/July as further improvements take place, with plant operations targeted to build towards the first commercial sales in July.

“The availability of sufficient KTMS (kainite-type mixed salts) to feed the plant is currently a production constraint, however with the improved pond operating procedures, expectations are that sufficient KTMS will be available by end of August to commence the ramp-up in production,” Jubber said.

Until then, Kalium Lakes plans to produce SOP at lower rates, including undertaking further optimisation works during a plant shutdown in August, as well as the installation of a heat exchanger to allow improved operation during hot summer weather.

Production will recommence in September, with progressive SOP output ramp-up through to nameplate performance tests planned at the end of Q4 CY2022.

Editor of industrial titles and mastheads with Prime Creative Media. Publications include Rail Express and Australian Mining (web content).
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