Retrofitting of copper reverberatory furnaces by incorporating Contop technology

CIM Bulletin, Vol. 77, No. 871, 1984
N. TORRES, Manager of Metallurgy, KHD Canada Inc., Montreal, Canada, G. MELCHER, Director, Non-Ferrous Division, KHD Humboldt Wedag AG, Cologne, West Germany
Abstract An alternative to building new copper smelters, because of either stringent environmental regulations or in order to expand current plant capacity, could be achieved through the retrofitting of old reverberatory furnaces by making use of tonnage oxygen. The CONTOP technology offers unique advantages over other techniques for this purpose, especially regarding substantial reduction in both, capital and operating costs. This is possible to achieve since the reverb throughput could be largely increased with no major structural modifications to the furnace.
The following options are offered to the smelter operators: dirty concentrates can be treated in an adjacent Contop system, or the cyclones can be mounted on the reverb roof for either dual operation or full Contop operation. In the latter case the furnace will be used as a settling chamber and for slag cleaning by top blowing with reducing gases.
By incorporating Contop technology, the furnace throughput can be increased, higher matte grade, fixation of sulphur from furnace off-gas and substantial savings in energy consumption are possible to attain.
Keywords: Reverb furnaces, Copper smelting, Contop process, Cyclone smelting
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