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BHP partners with Future Element JV for ATA® Tailings Dewatering Studies.

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TLDR:

  • Future Element JV, a joint venture between Clean TeQ Water and mine tailings management company Future Element, has joined BHP’s Think and Act Differently (TAD) program to perform tailings dewatering studies.
  • The program aims to rapidly dewater slurries to produce dry stack tailings and make critical minerals immediately available for recovery.
  • If the 3-month program is successful, it will lead to on-site piloting and eventual commercial-scale demonstrations.

The Future Element JV has joined BHP’s Think and Act Differently (TAD) program to perform tailings dewatering studies using ATA® technology. The TAD program, powered by BHP, aims to de-risk ideas and fast-track technological breakthroughs by engaging innovators in short experiments. Future Element joined the program as part of the Essentials Minerals Cohort and will receive funding, mentoring, access to subject experts, and samples needed for testing.

The 3-month testwork program will focus on preparing conceptual flowsheets for tailings dewatering based on the ATA® technology. The goal is to rapidly dewater slurries to produce dry stack tailings, while also making the critical minerals contained in the tailings immediately available for recovery. If the testwork is successful, it will lead to on-site piloting and eventual commercial-scale demonstrations.

The ATA® technology, developed by Clean TeQ Water, offers a secure and low-cost mine tailings treatment process. It rapidly separates water and solids in ore slurries, producing stackable dry tailings and recycled water. The technology uses smart chemistry to agglomerate the solids, which then dewater under their own gravity. This eliminates the need for high capital and operating cost pressured filtration commonly used in the industry. The resulting materials can be compressed and stacked, and the extracted water can be recycled or used for recovery of dissolved metals, reducing water usage.

Future Element JV, established by Clean TeQ Water and Future Element Pty Ltd, provides holistic solutions for rehabilitating tailings and water at mine sites. The joint venture aims to recover valuable products from current and historic tailings, treat water for discharge or recycling, and rehabilitate land ready for release back to communities.

The TAD program has supported over 40 companies and innovators in developing and implementing their technologies on a commercial scale through funding, connections, and mentoring. The program focuses on accelerating mine design processes and integrating technologies required to build modern mines.

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