MRC’s Tormin Mineral Sands Operation consists of four concentrate product streams:
- High Grade Garnet Concentrate
- High Grade Zircon / Rutile Concentrate
- High Grade Ilmenite Concentrate
- Medium Grade Ilmenite Concentrate
In 2015, the Tormin Operation produced in excess of 250,000 tonnes of zircon / rutile / ilmenite and garnet concentrate. The production of concentrates increased gradually and in 2017, there was a total of 843,567 tonnes produced, including 224,196 tonnes of high zircon content garnet concentrate refeed and 78,106 tonnes of high zircon content ilmenite concentrate refeed. This was processed through the Garnet Stripping Plant / Secondary Concentrate Plant (“GSP/SCP”) to produce 435,590 tonnes of garnet concentrate, 217,019 tonnes of ilmenite concentrate, and 22,111 tonnes of zircon/rutile concentrate.
Zircon Rutile Concentrate
Zircon is used in the manufacture of ceramic products including tiles, sanitary-ware and table-ware, and as an opacifier in surface glazes and pigments. Zircon is also the main component in the production of zirconium chemicals used in antiperspirants, paper coatings, paint driers and catalysts. Other main uses for zircon include foundry sand, Cathode Ray Tube television glass and refractories.
Rutile is a form of titanium dioxide mineral.
Titanium dioxide minerals rutile, leucoxene and ilmenite are the principal feedstocks for titanium pigment production. Titanium pigments are used for the manufacture of paints, coatings and plastics, and also in other applications such as pharmaceutical, cosmetics, inks and fibres. Titanium dioxide is used in specialist applications including welding rods and also in the production of titanium metal for industrial and aerospace applications.
Ilmenite is the main source of mineral feedstock for titanium pigment production.
Garnet is usually thought of as a gemstone but most garnet is mined for industrial uses. The major industrial uses of garnet are for waterjet cutting purposes, abrasive blasting media, water filtration granules and abrasive powders.