Aker Kvaerner delivers Thai Copper project

The world’s newest copper smelter was handed over from the EPC contractor Aker Kvaerner of Norway to Thai Copper in May.
     This delivery to the Thai client’s plant in Rayong marks a successful end of a project that began in 1995, only to be suspended mid 1998 due to the Asian crisis before it could be concluded late this spring.
     Aker Kvaerner’s specialised commissioning and plant services business unit, Aker Kvaerner Bowen, has been contracted for assistance in further commissioning and ramp-up efforts.
     The USD 580 million smelter and refinery complex is scheduled to reach full production by mid 2005. Approximately five million man-hours were performed, under an extremely good safety record, in the construction, reports Aker Kvaerner.
     The new smelter and refinery will produce 165,000 tonnes per year of 99.99 percent pure copper with the recognised industry standard LME Grade A. The production comprises 150,000 tonnes per year of copper from concentrates and 15,000 tonnes per year of copper from scrap.
     Smelting furnace offgases are cleaned and treated for impurities prior to conversion to sulfuric acid in a double contact acid plant to make this plant a very modern, environmentally advanced facility. The majority of acid production will be utilized in the Thai fertiliser industry.
     “We have in this project for Thai Copper built a modern effective facility that is also an environmentally responsible addition to Thailand’s infrastructure,” says Jim McGrath, President of Aker Kvaerner’s global metals business unit.

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