Fluorspar: New South African acidspar mine opens with plans for downstream beneficiation to follow

SepFluor Nokeng

SepFluor Limited’s R1.7Bn (US$115M) Nokeng fluorspar mine and plant at Rust de Winter, north east of Pretoria, was officially opened on 1 August 2019.

Nokeng has a 12Mt SAMREC-compliant reserve and an initial estimated life-of-mine of 19 years. It will initially exploit two haematite-fluorspar orebodies—Outwash Fan and Plattekop—with an option to later include Wiltin, a third and as-yet partially explored orebody.

The mine’s concentrator will produce around 180ktpy of acid grade fluorspar (>97% pure fluorspar also known as acidspar) and 30ktpy of metallurgical grade fluorspar (metspar) from run-of-mine fluorspar ore production of 630ktpy.

SepFluor is now focused on securing finance for its fluorochemicals facility at Ekandustria, near Bronkhorstspruit and on completing the definitive feasibility study in order to start construction of its second mine, Wallmannsthal.

The company plans to beneficiate acidspar from Nokeng and Wallmannsthal to produce 60ktpy of hydrofluoric acid (HF) at Ekandustria, of which 41ktpy will be used to produce 60ktpy of aluminium fluoride for local and export markets.

Roskill View

Acidspar supplies remain tight worldwide and much of this new mine’s first production has already been sold, mostly into the international, US and European markets, with continuing strong demand from these markets and good prospects for additional sales into China and India.

Roskill’s Fluorspar: Global Industry, Markets & Outlook report breaks down the complex fluorine supply chain considerations into clear forecasts with price forecasts based on analysis of both supply and demand.

Roskill will be speaking and chairing discussions at both the Fastmarkets Fluorspar 2019 event in London and the IMFORMED Fluorine Forum 2019 event in Prague in September/October 2019. SepFluor is also a sponsor of IMFORMED Fluorine Forum 2019.

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This article was written by Kerry Satterthwaite. Please get in touch below if you wish to discuss further:

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