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MEI Online: Solid-Liquid Separation: Latest News: March 23rd 2005


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:: Global Demand for Bateman Thickening Equipment

Demand for Bateman's minerals-processing equipment continues to grow internationally with recent contracts coming from, amongst others, Kazakhstan in the CIS, South Africa and Botswana.

Bateman was awarded a R2M contract by Gold Fields to supply the Suzdal sulphate plant in Kazakhstan with four Bateman-WesTech high-rate thickeners. The plant, located in Semipalatinsk in Kazakhstan, is owned by the Kazakhstan Joint Stock Company, Alel-FIC. Gold Fields' Biox technology is currently being installed at the plant to process gold and makes use of bacteria to make sulphide ores more amenable to leaching by cyanide.

Of the four thickeners, three are counter-current decantation (CCD) units treating 8 t/h of washed Biox product. All wetted parts are fabricated from 304L stainless steel and have high-rate lift mechanisms. The washed Biox product will be processed at a pH of 1,2 to 4 to assist the solids to settle.

The fourth thickener is a water-recovery thickener fabricated from mild steel, for use in the dewatering of neutralised effluent. It will treat 8,2 t/h at a pH of 6 to 7.

The units are 10,6 m in diameter each, and the tanks will be manufactured in Kazakhstan by the client, based on Bateman designs and drawings and built under license from WesTech. Bateman will check the completed thickener tanks and commission them after the installation of the mechanisms. The drives for the thickeners, supplied by Bateman, were manufactured in South Africa. The sizing of the thickeners was determined after test work on samples provided by Gold Fields.

Bateman also supplied the control instrumentation for the thickeners, including control panels, the level-detection instruments and pressure transducers for all of the thickeners.

A 3 m diameter Bateman Ultrasep thickener, fabricated from 304L stainless steel, is also being supplied to thicken the 8,0 t/h underflow from the last CCD thickener. A flocculant optimiser for flocculant addition control and bed-vibration instrumentation to maximise the underflow density are being provided for the Ultrasep.

The Bateman-WesTech high-rate, heavy-duty thickeners offer a superior performance over other models, due to their unique drive mechanism complete with lift capabilities. Advantages include a reduced power consumption with efficiency ranges 40 to 50 % higher than competitive units, a long operating life and minimum maintenance requirements even in the harshest conditions. The high-rate thickeners are provided in sizes ranging from 1 m to 75 m in diameter, with duties rated at over 5M Nm of torque. The configuration of these units can be suited to meet the needs of the client and each design is customised. All drive-heads are backed by comprehensive warranty and service programmes.

The Bateman Ultrasep permits very high allowable rise rates in the thickener and thus reduces the required thickening area significantly, affording a far more cost-effective thickening solution. In addition, the Ultrasep thickener has no moving parts and thus the need for maintenance is virtually eliminated. It is used in the metallurgical and mineral processing industry for mill-circuit thickening, CCD, backfill and carbon-fines recovery, dewatering and water recovery and slag treatment.




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