MONTREAL, QUEBEC - Orbite Technologies Inc. today announced in a press release that the Company has conducted preliminary research indicating that gold recovery from fly ash using its waste monetization technology is potentially feasible and has filed a provisional patent application titled "Processes for Recovering Noble Metals from Various Materials".
"In the analysis of multiple feedstocks, we identified gold concentrations that, if extractable, can significantly increase the potential value of fly ash when processed using our technology," stated Glenn Kelly, CEO of Orbite. "Our research indicates that the same process approach as used for the recovery of scandium and gallium could potentially also allow us to recover gold. Consequently, we intend further investigating and developing this aspect of our technology, and include gold recovery in the workflow for the conversion of the extraction section at our Cap-Chat facility to the chloride process."
Preliminary engineering for the conversion of the HPA plant's alumina extraction unit to a demonstration facility for multi-feedstock utilization using the Company's chloride technology is planned to be completed in the first half of 2016. The actual conversion work is slated to commence in H2 2016, with the extraction section operational in 2017, providing the technology demonstration platform required for the commercial expansion of Orbite's waste monetization initiative.
Mr. Kelly continued, "Using our technology, we currently estimate average value for typical fly ash at around US$200-250 per tonne. Even at observed average concentrations of 7.5 ppm of gold in fly ash, a 50% recovery would increase this value to US$350 - 400 per tonne, while 100% recovery would increase this to around US$500 - 550 per tonne. This will make an already game changing technology even more interesting, both for potential partners and current waste owners. We believe the technology development for gold recovery can be accelerated and included in the workflow towards conversion of the facility without materially extending our timelines."
In addition to gold, the Company anticipates that other noble metals, such as platinum, iridium, and palladium, could make a further positive contribution to the fly ash value if extractable with its technology. At its Technology Development Centre ("TDC"), Orbite is currently developing new and proprietary analytical methods for the identification of low concentrations of these other valuable elements that can potentially be extracted using its technology.
The Orbite process is able to utilize a wide variety of wastes such as fly ash, red mud and mine tailings as feedstocks for extracting valuable constituents, such as scandium, gallium, rare earths, rare metals, alumina, magnesium oxide and titanium dioxide. Globally, billions of tonnes of waste are stored, creating very significant environmental and financial liabilities for waste owners and communities. At Cap-Chat, the Company has a $117 million, nearly completed facility for the production of high purity alumina, which, once converted to the chloride process, will provide the platform for global commercialization of its waste monetization technology.
Orbite Technologies Inc. is a Canadian cleantech company whose innovative and proprietary processes are expected to produce alumina and other high-value products, such as rare earth and rare metal oxides, at one of the lowest costs in the industry, and in a sustainable fashion, using feedstocks that include aluminous clay, kaolin, nepheline, bauxite, red mud, fly ash as well as serpentine residues from chrysotile processing sites. O