Rio Tinto Plans New $2.9M Tellurium Recovery Plant

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Metals and minerals firm Rio Tinto said it will construct new facility that will recover the mineral tellurium from copper smelting byproducts at its Kennecott mine near Salt Lake City, UT. The $2.9 million plant will be capable of producing 20 tn/yr of tellurium.

“Adding tellurium to our product portfolio provides customers in North America with a secure and reliable source of tellurium produced at the highest environmental and labor standards with renewable energy,” said the managing director of the Kennecott mine, Gaby Poirier. “Rio Tinto is committed to using innovation to reduce waste in our production process and extract as much value as possible from the material that we mine and process.”

The company has partnered with the US Department of Energy’s Critical Materials Institute (CMI) to find new ways of recovering critical mineral byproducts like rhenium, tellurium, and lithium.

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