Kalium Lakes Ltd (KLL) announced that commissioning of the Large Scale Pilot Evaporation Ponds has commenced at the Beyondie Sulphate Of Potash Project (BSOPP), with brine being pumped from existing production bores into the pilot ponds.
Managing Director, Brett Hazelden, commented: “Commissioning the Large Scale Pilot Evaporation Ponds within 65 days of commencing construction is a significant achievement.”
“The real costs and the data collected during construction will allow KLL’s capital and operating cost estimates to be derived from experience, further refining and enhancing the strong basis for the economic analysis in our Pre-Feasibility Study, which is nearing completion.”
“Importantly, based on calculations that show a significant improvement of approximately 18% in terms of higher potassium recovery when compared to unlined ponds, we made the informed decision to line these ponds.”
“This higher recovery, in turn, reduces capital costs associated with longer trenches, additional production bores and constructing a larger evaporation pond area. It also decreases unit operating costs and extends the operating life at the BSOPP, which we are confident will more than offset the initial cost of liners.
“KLL continues to demonstrate a strong understanding of what it takes to develop an SOP project in Australia, based on actual information gained at a meaningful scale,” Mr Hazelden said.
The Large Scale Pilot Evaporation Pond programme reflects KLL’s development strategy, where a staged development approach is preceded by a pilot program to verify current assumptions and operational parameters along with production of bulk samples for marketing purposes. This trial program is based at the Beyondie, 10 Mile and Sunshine areas of the BSOPP. The pilot ponds will be operated on a continuous basis (not batch), as recommended by KLL’s key consultants K-UTEC and DSB International.
The Large Scale Pilot Evaporation Pond programme aims to trial the following parameters:
- Layout and number of ponds.
- Dimensions of ponds to optimise flow path.
- Optimum brine depth within ponds.
- Differential evaporation rates as the brine density increases.
- Brine concentration profile and phase chemistry over seasonal and diurnal ranges.
- Brine entrainment in salt floors.
- Pond floor and liner requirements.
- Harvest equipment and plans.
- Pond start-up procedure.
- Time required to achieve steady state operations.
- Operations and maintenance requirements.
To date, various pond construction verification and leakage trial results have confirmed the preferred off-lake evaporation pond location and construction system, based on capital cost, operating cost, pond leakage rates, entrainment, potassium recovery and efficient use of the brine Resource.
For comparative purposes against a perceived lower cost unlined evaporation pond strategy, KLL has developed the following table to help demonstrate the additional considerations when making an informed “total life of project” decision. The fixed parameter for this table (below) is the equivalent amount of concentrated potassium salts produced by the evaporations ponds, which will comprise the purification plant feed stock (Raw Pond SOP salt equivalent).
Read the article online at: https://www.worldfertilizer.com/potash/15082017/kll-fills-large-scale-pilot-ponds/