The Old Copper Smelting Plants

The Old Copper Smelting Plants

“Karabashmed” is one of the oldest copper smelting plants of the South Ural located in the city of Karabash. The main activity of the plant is making blister copper from copper concentrate with a preliminary enrichment of copper-zinc ores and also from recycled copper raw material.

The Old Copper Smelting Plants

Another company we gonna visit is “Kyshtymskiy Electrolytic Copper Plant” which is in the city of Kyshtym of the Chelyabinsk region. It makes copper cathodes, copper rods and precious metals from blister copper and copper-containing secondary raw materials.

The Old Copper Smelting Plants

“Karabashmed”, JSC. is a city forming company of Karabash.

The Old Copper Smelting Plants

Today it’s the only metallurgic company in Russia wotking with an advanced technology “Ausmelt”. In November 2006 one “Ausmelt” copper-smelting furnace replaced six one hundred years old shaft furnaces.

The Old Copper Smelting Plants

Here old shaft furnaces used to be placed.

The Old Copper Smelting Plants

Copper concentrate loading.

The Old Copper Smelting Plants

The Old Copper Smelting Plants

The main building of the processing plant and inside is a ball mill with a central loading of copper-zinc ores.

The Old Copper Smelting Plants

The new furnace allowed to increase the plant performance up to 90 thousand tons of blister copper a year while fume gas volume decreased sixfold.

The Old Copper Smelting Plants

The general view of the “Ausmelt” furnace.

The Old Copper Smelting Plants

Matte loading.

The Old Copper Smelting Plants

The content of the melting furnace flows into the settler where it releases gas. The admixtures rise up as slag while the heavier copper blister sinks to the bottom.

The Old Copper Smelting Plants

Draining of the slag from the converter to the ladle.

The Old Copper Smelting Plants

The Old Copper Smelting Plants

The alloy temperature is 1150 C.

The Old Copper Smelting Plants

In the control room.

The Old Copper Smelting Plants

The slag comes out from the mixer furnace.

The Old Copper Smelting Plants

The Old Copper Smelting Plants

Pouring the slag into the bowl from the mixer furnace.

The Old Copper Smelting Plants

Discharge of the slag into the pit.

The Old Copper Smelting Plants

It’s quite a spectacle!

The Old Copper Smelting Plants

The Old Copper Smelting Plants

The equipment of the company had not been modernized at all in the Soviet times and by the end of the twentieth century the ecological situation became very serious in Karabash.

In June, 25th, 1996 Karabash and neighbouring territories were characterized as the zone of ecological disaster.

The Old Copper Smelting Plants

Since the beginning of the XXI century the company’s production has been slowly modernized and more eco-friendly technologies have been put into operation.

In 2009 Karabash was excluded from the list of the cities with the highest level of air pollution.

The Old Copper Smelting Plants

The Old Copper Smelting Plants

“Kyshtymskiy Electrolytic Copper Plant” makes copper and precious metals (as a byproduct of copper refining).

The Old Copper Smelting Plants

Fire refining.

The Old Copper Smelting Plants

The process is taking place in the copper smelting shop.

The Old Copper Smelting Plants

The shop is equipped with a tilting furnace “MAERZ” with capacity of 380 tons and a pouring complex M-24.

The Old Copper Smelting Plants

Taking samples from the smelting furnace “МAERZ” for determining the chemical composition and the level of metal readiness.

The Old Copper Smelting Plants

The Old Copper Smelting Plants

Anode filling machine “Outokumpu”.

The Old Copper Smelting Plants

The Old Copper Smelting Plants

The Old Copper Smelting Plants

The Old Copper Smelting Plants

They also have a reverberatory furnace An-1 with capacity of 140 tons and performance of 42 thousand anodes a year.

The Old Copper Smelting Plants

The Old Copper Smelting Plants

Loading of the reverberatory furnace.

The Old Copper Smelting Plants

Electrolysis baths.

The Old Copper Smelting Plants

The machine separating anodes for 102 mm.

The Old Copper Smelting Plants

Separation of copper electrolysis. They can achieve very high purity of copper cathode (average copper content in cathodes – 99.997%).

The Old Copper Smelting Plants

Loaded matrixes with cathode copper.

The Old Copper Smelting Plants

Then they wash residues from anodes.

The Old Copper Smelting Plants

This conveyor packages cathodes.

The Old Copper Smelting Plants

They produce precious metals from blister copper and copper-containing secondary raw materials. This is how gold initially looks like.

The Old Copper Smelting Plants

Granules of gold.

The Old Copper Smelting Plants

Granules of silver.

The Old Copper Smelting Plants

The process of gold melting in the crucible furnaces.

The Old Copper Smelting Plants

The Old Copper Smelting Plants

Almost ready gold bullions.

The Old Copper Smelting Plants

Copper rod making process.

The Old Copper Smelting Plants

It is made by continuous casting and rolling.

The Old Copper Smelting Plants

Metal is supplied to the casting wheel. The Old Copper Smelting PlantsAdjustment before entering the rolling mill.

The Old Copper Smelting Plants

Copper rod packaging.

The Old Copper Smelting Plants

The Old Copper Smelting Plants

The Old Copper Smelting Plants

Check samples.

The Old Copper Smelting Plants

The Old Copper Smelting Plants

The Old Copper Smelting Plants

The plant annually makes about 100 tons of copper rod, more than 100 thousand tons of copper cathodes, more than 100 tons of silver and 3,7 tons of gold.

via gelio-nsk

 

5 thoughts on “The Old Copper Smelting Plants”

  1. Lovely photos.
    I love copper. one of my favourite elements. I’m very worried about the environment. so much pollution… they could minimize it. pouring slag into earth is considered an environmental crime. slag can be used to make concrete.

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