Contributing to Circular Economy In New Caledonia : Nickel Slag

Posted 22-03-2023
Category News

High frequency screening technology aids in the processing and reuse of significant amounts of nickel slag, contributing to New Caledonia's circular economy.


New Caledonia, which is located in the South Pacific around 1200 kilometers east of Queensland's Sunshine Coast, is best known as a tropical vacation spot. The nickel mining industry, however, has been the engine of the French island territory's economy since the middle of the 19th century.


A recent project involving Astec, a leading equipment supplier within Australia and Salmon NC sees the two companies recycling nickel slag for Société Le Nickel (SLN), which operates one of the world's largest nickel refineries, located within Doniambo, Noumea on New Caledonia's east coast. 


Nickel slag is a sand-like material that is a by-product of nickel refining. In New Caledonia, there are growing stockpiles of this material, leading SLN to seek environmentally conscious ways to repurpose it. Chris Salmon, CEO of Salmon NC contacted Astec to explore reprocessing options.

 Nickel slag has predominantly been used for land reclamation within New Caledonia, and SLN is interested in using it as a sand replacement in concrete, road base, fill, and drainage material, however the challenge is to find a way to process the raw stockpile for reuse.
Ferronickel slag sample: (a) ferronickel slag aggregate; (b)... | Download Scientific Diagram
      - Ferronickel Slag
This by-product can replace natural sand in many applications such as the production of concrete and for sandblasting. When crushed, it can partially replace cement thanks to its binding properties.  

Additional uses for nickel slag include granular foundation and embankment materials, aggregate substitutes in hot mix asphalt, mine backfill materials, railway ballast materials, grit blast abrasives, roofing granule material, and in the production of blended cements. 

Protecting what matters 
Chris Salmon, CEO of Salmon NC has highlighted that finding a specific secondary use for this particular industrial product that is “genuinely contributing to a circular economy” and that having Astec who is equally committed to giving back to the environment as a partner is a fantastic result all around and has additionally stated that the company is excited to reduce their carbon footprint through finding the best possible ways to utilize the nickel slag product.


There are no comments.

Posting comments after has been disabled.