Lynas Corporation Metallurgical Accounting

Lynas implements cost effective and flexible metallurgical accounting system for REE plant

Lynas Corporation produces Rare Earth (RE) concentrate from the Mt Weld operation, 35kms south of Laverton in Western Australia. As a product of the onsite flotation plant, concentrate is shipped to Malaysia for further processing at the Lynas Advanced Materials Plant in Kuantan. A suite of products are made in Malaysia and then shipped to Lynas’ global customers.

Challenge:

The plant at Mt Weld employs a five stage flotation process which is unique to the extraction and concentration of REE and significantly different to the metallurgical process required to extract gold. The Mt Weld product itself is an uncommon mix of metals. Due to the ramp-up process, crushing and flotation is done in batches, with a number of metals being tracked from pit through to concentrate.

The challenge was to implement a cost-effective solution for metal accounting that was scaled appropriately for the Mt Weld operation. The system needed to be uncomplicated, but also able to handle the special requirements of a REE plant. In addition, the Mt Weld operation is certified to ISO 9001 (Quality management systems), so required high standards of data integrity around the tracking of materials through the process plant.

Solution:

A review of metallurgical accounting systems was undertaken and Lynas chose Cubility’s MPX-DS package. There were a number of customisations required to meet the specific needs of the process, but Cubility built on the existing platform to manage this as the project at Mt Weld ramped up.

All data pertaining to the processing of the Mt Weld ore is entered into the MPX-DS database, with daily, monthly, shipping and numerous other metallurgical accounting reports prepared from the system. The company manages concentrate quality using the system, which is critical given that the materials are exported for further processing to Malaysia.

Lynas were able to use the MPX-DS database as a component of the ISO 9001 certification process to demonstrate transparent data collection, management and integrity for the processing facility and having the system helps to maintain the certification.

Compared to other market offerings, the Cubility solution was competitively priced and the relationship now is an enduring one.

Benefits:

  • System is easy to use, yet flexible enough to be customised to Lynas’ unique requirements
  • Supporting system for quality certification
  • Price competitive compared to other market offerings