Mineral sands exports exceeded

Mineral sands exports from Iluka’s Hamilton processing plant have exceeded expectations in their first 12 months of operation.

Mineral sands exports from Iluka’s Hamilton processing plant have exceeded expectations in their first 12 months of operation.

More than 59,000 tonnes of rutile and 128,000 tonnes of zircon have been produced for export at the Hamilton processing plant over the last 12 months, which has been transported through the Port of Portland, totalling a sales value of $87 million for 2007.

Iluka’s operations are the largest mineral sands operations in Victoria.

Iluka has already committed a further $210 million to a second mineral sands project in north-west Victoria, for which they are currently seeking approval. This project, if it goes ahead, will further boost operations at Hamilton.

Iluka’s Hamilton facility extracts the minerals Rutile and Zircon.

Rutile is used in the manufacture of protective coatings such as paints, sunscreens and plastics and it can also be processed into titanium metal used for surgical implants and aircraft frames.

Zircon is a hard, glassy mineral used for the manufacture of ceramics and in a range of high-tech industrial and chemical applications. It is used extensively for ceramic glazes, most commonly applied in kitchen tiles, dinner-ware and bathroom products across the world.

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