The NWE-REGENERATIS project (Interreg North-West Europe), coordinated by SPAQUE, aims at demonstrating that resources (metals, minerals and land) can be recovered from Past Metallurgical Sites and Deposits (PMSDs) by Urban Mining techniques. CTP's involvement in the project consists essentially of evaluating the metals recovery potential from three metallurgical sites, located in Belgium, France and UK , by applying mineral processing techniques.
The University of Liege carried out a characterisation of the DUFERCO steelmaking waste stockpile in La Louvière (Belgium) using non-intrusive geophysical prospecting techniques. These techniques located the areas with significant concentrations of potentially valuable metals and were correlated with the analyses of samples.
A few tons of material were taken from three higher-grade locations in order to carry out separation tests using mineral processing techniques on a pilot scale at CTP.
The proposed treatment line, which was displayed during the REGENERATIS mid-term event held on the 2nd and 3rd of February 2022 in Tournai (Belgium), includes crushing, screening and magnetic separation equipment. Crushing allows metallic scraps to be released from a mineral gangue. Screening with different mesh sizes allows tightening of the particle size range after crushing, which improves the efficiency of the downstream separation processes. Magnetic and eddy current separation allows the recovery of valuable metallic fractions (Fe, Al, etc..) and the concentration in some fractions of the metals that may be recovered through various subsequent extraction processes by hydrometallurgy or pyrometallurgy.
A chemical analysis of the different fractions will be carried out in the near future to enhance the operating protocol .