Lantania to extend water treatment facilities at FQM’s Cobre Las Cruces

Lantania says it has strengthened its position as a leading company in industrial water treatment with a contract to expand the permanent water treatment plant (PWTP) of the First Quantum Minerals-owned Cobre Las Cruces mining complex, in the province of Seville, Spain.

The company has been awarded the contract for the drafting of the project, the design of the treatment lines, construction and start-up of the development of this infrastructure, for a contract sum of €5.2 million ($5.6 million).

The PWTP expansion is part of the preliminary work for the start-up of the company’s new mining and metallurgical project, which will allow it to continue operations through switching to a polymetallurgical processing route and developing an underground mine. With the expansion of the treatment plant, the volumes to be treated have increased by more than 50%, which represents an important reinforcement of Cobre Las Cruce’s water management, Lantania said.

The water will be treated in a process line consisting of a physical-chemical pretreatment by decantation, filtration, ultrafiltration and finally reverse osmosis with minimum recovery yields of 90%, achieving, in all cases, water with a quality similar to that of drinking water.

Lantania has been responsible for the operation of the mining complex’s water treatment plant since its construction in 2010.

Production at Cobre Las Cruces began in 2009 for the extraction and processing of copper. It has one of the most advanced and sustainable hydrometallurgical plants in the world, producing copper cathodes of the highest quality (99.999% purity, Grade “A” by the London Metal Exchange).

Exploitation of the current secondary copper sulphide resources will be completed during 2023, but work is underway to continue mining additional polymetallic primary sulphide mineral resources containing copper, zinc, lead and silver. This new underground mine and polymetallic refinery project is called PMR (Poly Metallurgical Refinery). This refinery will produce four metals (copper, zinc, lead and silver) through the application of an innovative technology created and patented by Cobre Las Cruces.