MSc (Eng) Project title A combined techno economic and environmental analysis of the different copper processing
(Supervisors: A/Prof Jochen Petersen, Dr J Broadhurst) Graduated: 2011
The systems oriented project aimed to develop a ical approach for comparing the techno/economic and environmental performances of the different process configurations that exist within the complex framework of copper extraction, which traditionally follows pyro-, hydro-, and / or bio-hydrometallurgical routes. An Excel-based inventory model was developed to act as a database and simulation tool simultaneously. The model was applied to a case study and performance indicators relating to the techno/economic and environmental performances of the different processing options were generated to inform decision making. Depending on the decision context, the economic indicators generated by the model are capital and operating costs, net present value, internal rate of return, payback period and return on investment. The environmental performance indicators generated are waste quantities, energy consumption, global warming potential, acidification potential and water consumption. The economic and environmental indicators are linked together through eco-efficiency indicators, which are useful for informing sustainable decision making. The model takes into account site and geographical specific parameters.
Peer-reviewed conference proceedings
Lusinga D., Petersen J. and Broadhurst J. 2011. A multi criteria analysis and comparison of primary copper processing options. In: M Sánchez, D Mulligan and J Wiertz (eds), 2nd International Seminar on Environmental Issues in the Mining Industry, Santiago, Chile, 23-25 November 2011, Gecamin: 14-15
Oral conference presentations
Lusinga, D., Broadhurst, J.L. and Petersen, J. 2010. An environmental and techno – economic analysis of the different copper extraction routes, SAIMM (Western Cape Branch) Conference, Cape Town, 7-8 August 2010.