Peabody Energy has signed a contract with wastewater solutions provider SciDev to provide an OptiFlox treatment system at its Wilpinjong thermal coal mine in New South Wales.
The contract includes the provision of SciDev’s OptiFlox system and associated chemicals to the 12mtpa mine, around 40km north east of Mudgee.
The system addresses ‘black water’ issues, where the clarity of water from a coal tailings’ thickener deteriorates, potentially resulting in coal washing plants shutting down or coal production stopping.
It constantly measures particle characteristics of coal tailings slurry to maintain suitable flocculation conditions through automated, real time control of coagulant dosing.
It reduces production stoppages caused by black water, allowing consistent clarified water to be produced for return to the washing plant.
The two-year contract is estimated between $350,000 – $400,000 a year, and Peabody will pay a monthly leasing fee to use the system and to purchase associated wastewater treatment chemicals.
The contract comes after Peabody installed and successfully held a six-month trial of the OptiFlox Mark-2 system at the mine in December last year.