Xstrata Nickel

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Recent Research Projects

Application of advanced surface characterization technologies (ASCT) towards process optimization through diagnosis and problem-solving in flotation and extractive metallurgy

2013/14-2017/18 • $709,208
Efficiency of metal recovery requires optimized strategies reflecting the complex mineral chemistry that is encountered in many mineral processing operations. Methods of recovery (eg. flotation and cyanidation) have operated for more than a century. However, a quantitative relationship between...

Bioaccessibility, bioavailability and mineralogy of soil metal contaminants for application to site specific risk assessment

2012/13-2016/17 • $472,500
Metal contaminants in soil can pose a risk to human health through exposure via ingestion or inhalation of soil particles and absorption of the contaminant by the gut or lung. Regulations governing the cleanup of contaminated sites mostly calculate the potential dose by measuring the total...

Application of seismic stress inversion to stress field mapping in deep mines

2013/14-2016/17 • $153,414
The primary tools used for geomechanical mine design are numerical stress analysis codes. Using these tools, the stability of alternative layout and extraction sequences can be examined. The most important input parameters for these stability analyses are rock mass strength and a definition of...

Role of terrestrial carbon and base cations in the recovery of damaged aquatic systems

2010/11-2014/15 • $500,000
Clean water and diverse communities of aquatic biota are so dependent on watershed processes that they can be considered "products" of healthy forests in the Boreal Shield Ecozone. Carbon inputs from the terrestrial watershed are key determinants of productivity of dilute lakes, with both...

Spatial distribution and genetic models of Cu-Ni-PGE systems associated with the Sudbury structure

2010/11-2014/15 • $369,539
Sudbury is a unique place on Earth. The Sudbury basin is a deformed meteoritic impact crater (now filled with sedimentary rocks) that was created 1,850 million years ago. The impact of the meteor produced a crater estimated at 200 km diameter and the energy released on impact melted a large...

Validation of microwave rock conditioning for mechanical excavation

2012/13-2014/15 • $332,095
Hard rocks were and they still are a big challenge for most of both civil and mining projects, such as tunneling and underground excavations. The assistance of microwave energy on a conventional mechanical rock breakage system, as a novel technique, will be extensively investigated. Microwave...

Bioprocessing of nickeliferous sulphidic wastes from mining activities

2013/14-2014/15 • $140,000
We propose to investigate the amenability to bio-processing of a metallurgical waste stream produced by the Xstrata Nickel smelting operations in Sudbury, Ontario, namely nickeliferous pyrrhotite concentrate. This is an iron-sulphur mineral (approx. stoichiometry Fe1-xS) that is rejected because...

Dynamique des populations et utilisation de l'espace du caribou migrateur du Québec-Labrador: impacts des activités industrielles et des changements climatiques

2010/11-2013/14 • $729,012
Notre programme de recherche vise à identifier les facteurs qui influencent la dynamique de population etl'utilisation de l'espace par les caribous migrateurs dans un contexte de changements climatiques. Avec nospartenaires, nous chercherons à comprendre les facteurs qui influencent les...

Metal isotope ratios as indicators of dissolved metal release and attenuation

2011/12-2013/14 • $543,000
The release of metals at mine sites, mineral processing facilities, and mine waste disposal areas can result in contamination of groundwater resources. Dissolved metals such as Cu, Ni, and Zn can migrate along the groundwater flow path, and may be attenuated by reactions with the aquifer...

Monitoring land reclamation and plant conservation of metal-contaminated and uncontaminated areas in the Sudbury region: application of molecular, cytological, and soil analyses

2010/11-2013/14 • $156,000
A collaborative research project was initiated in November 2005 with funding from NSERC, Vale - INCO and Xstrata - Nickel. During the first phase of the project (2005 - 2009), seven M.Sc. theses and three undergraduate projects were completed. In addition, data collected and analyzed during the...

Selective sulfation roasting of Ni concentrate to minimize off-gas pollution

2010/11-2012/13 • $260,600
This project aims at developing a new and more environmental friendlyprocess to treat nickel sulphide concentrate. Today, concentrate is sent to nickel smelters where it is oxidized with air to release SO2 and form a solid nickel calcine. This calcine is then sent to electric furnaces for...

Industrial waste heat and CO2 to enhance co-production of biodiesel and nutraceuticals from microalgae

2011/12-2012/13 • $192,500
A program with industrial partners Xstrata Nickel and AIS on the use of waste heat and carbon dioxide (CO2) in industrial off-gas to grow microalgae. Microalgae can produce clean burning biodiesel, which is regarded as a very promising renewable biofuel. Due to very low toxic emissions, one...

Real-time optimization of flotation column operation

2010/11-2011/12 • $140,023
Mineral processing is the sector of the mining industry in which ore is sufficiently upgraded for its use in the profitable production of metal. Typically, in a mineral processing plant ore is initially crushed and ground to liberate valuable mineral particles from useless minerals (gangue). The...

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