15 December 2015

Kola MMC completes the development of new technology

Kola Mining and Metallurgical Company, which is part of Norilsk Nickel, is completing another project. It concerns the development of a new technology for the production of cobalt of commodity higher brands. Industrial scale of production is supposed. The tension on the baths in the shop of electrolysis of nickel has already been filed. According to specialists' calculations, the finished metal will be received after a few days.

"Cobalt production" is a strategic project of Kola MMC and Norilsk Nickel. Its main goal is to create an industrial production of electrolyte cobalt . In Russia, such production will be the only one. In the world market, the highest brands of the product will be quite competitive.

The production of cobalt will be carried out by extraction-electrolysis chloride technique. The technology of production involves several stages. Initially, the cobalt of nickel electrolyte is purified. In this case, a cobalt primary cake is obtained. Oxidation with chlorine and precipitation of cobalt hydroxide is carried out in two stages. Then the cobalt concentrate is dissolved in hydrochloric acid. The resulting solution is purified by extraction method. Electrolysis is carried out in the baths, while the cathode metal is formed at the output.

The technology of production of electrolyte cobalt is not new. It was tested in 2000. Experienced industrial installation for the process was created by specialists of the Kola MMC. The constant production of small amounts of cobalt was established in 2007. With the implementation of the new project, the technology has been significantly improved. It has adapted to the expected industrial scale. The parameters of copper cobalt solution purification were revised. Among the modifications is the modification of pipeline tracing. The changes affected the scheme of supply and distribution of hydrochloric acid.

The technology required significant work on the reconstruction of certain redistributions of the nickel electrolysis shop. The hydrometallurgical section No. 2 and the 2-stage cobalt-cleaning zone were affected. New redistributions were built-the electrolysis site, the extraction department. Overpasses and external networks, auxiliary facilities, storage of hydrochloric acid have been created. In the process, nickel production continued to produce products. The project required investments of over 2 billion RUB.

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