Ivanhoe Mines recently announced that it was nearing completion of a major debottlenecking program for the Kamoa-Kakula Copper Complex’s Phase 1 and 2 concentrators ahead of schedule. Installation and commissioning of a fourth Larox filter press was the final step in the overall debottlenecking program and was expected to be finished in March 2023.
New equipment installed as part of the program consists of hydrocyclone systems, scavenger-cleaner flotation cells and a concentrate thickener as well as upgraded piping and pumping capacity. The total capital cost for the program was approximately $50 million, and it is intended to boost the nameplate ore processing capacity at the concentrators by 22% from 7.6 to 9.2 million metric tons of ore per year (mt/y), increasing production capacity up to approximately 450,000 mt/y of copper in concentrate. Kamoa-Kakula produced 333,497 mt of copper in concentrate in 2022.
The company said the Phase 1 concentrator had been operating at its new, sustained nameplate capacity of 580 dry mt/h since January 25, 2023, at times delivering up to 590 dry mt/h; and on February 25, within 12 hours of restarting, the Phase 2 concentrator also ramped up to its new, sustained nameplate capacity of 580 dry mt/h, or 9.2 million mt/y.