Local knowledge supports nickel mine development in Vietnam

Ban Phuc Nickel Mine site

Ban Phuc Nickel Mine site

26 September 2012 - Aurecon is assisting with the power and electrical design work for the Ban Phuc Nickel Mine site and processing plant in Vietnam.

Asian Mineral Resources Limited (AMR) is developing the Ban Phuc Nickel Project, which is 90 per cent owned by its subsidiary Ban Phuc Nickel Mines LLC (Ban Phuc). AMR’s Vietnamese partner holds the remaining 10 per cent.

Started in 2006, mothballed in 2008 because of poor world metal prices, the Ban Phuc Nickel Project restarted in 2012.

Located 160 km north-west of Hanoi in the Son La Province the project is the only one of its kind in Vietnam.  As one of the few remaining high-grade, near-term nickel sulphide projects, the Ban Phuc Nickel Project represents a unique platform to develop a significant nickel industry in Vietnam.

Continuing a project history that predates 2008, the local Aurecon team is providing electrical and, control and instrumentation design as well as engineering, procurement and construction management (EPCM) services for the process plant, slurry line to the tailings dam, and potentially the underground mine.

Having previously worked successfully with Aurecon in Vietnam on this project, Project Development Manager and AMR's Representative in Vietnam, Steve Ennor said it was logical to have the team back. He said AMR was impressed with the standard of Aurecon’s young engineers and the speed and quality of the design documents produced. 

“We found Aurecon’s knowledge in dealing with local authorities invaluable. They certainly fill the gap as a technical and advisory consultant for foreign companies who want to operate in this difficult environment,” Steve said.

Once built the ore processing plant is expected to process 1 000 tons of run-of-mine ore per day to improve its nickel concentration from 2.2 per cent to 9.5 per cent.  The process plant consists of a crusher, ball mill, classifiers, flotation cells, thickeners and filter press.

There is also a plan for AMR to develop a smelting operation at the Ban Phuc site that will produce matt metal of approximately 37 per cent nickel. 

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