MIPAC leads automation major metallurgical project in Kazakhstan

Dec. 6, 2006
MIPAC to provide design, automation and control systems for expansion of smelter complex

Brisbane, Australia, 5th December, 2006 --Process control & automation services and solutions provider MIPAC has been contracted through Xstrata Technology to design and commission the plant-wide control system and electrical systems for a major upgrade to Kazzinc's Ust-Kamenogorsk plants in Kazakhstan.

"The plant-wide control system from MIPAC is a key component of the major modernization project that will establish Kazzinc as a copper producer. The project will significantly improve the environmental performance of our lead smelter and contribute to an increase in the economic value of Kazzinc's product lines through a decrease in our operations costs." said Nick Popovic, president, Kazzinc.

The Ust-Kamenogorsk metallurgical complex, owned and operated by Kazzinc, currently consists of a zinc refinery, a lead smelter and a precious metals refinery. The Ust-Kamenogorsk New Metallurgy project will add a new copper smelter and copper refinery to the complex as well as replacing the core lead smelting technology with the innovative ISASMELT™ process.

MIPAC is contracted to supply the measurement and control design standards to be used across all of the new plants in the New Metallurgy project. MIPAC will design and configure the plant-wide Emerson DeltaV Distributed Control System. MIPAC is also responsible for the design and supply of electrical controls and instrumentation for the new ISASMELT™ lead and copper plants and the IsaProcess™ copper refinery, both from Xstrata Technology.

The project role is similar to MIPAC's role at Mopani in Zambia which was awarded the national PACE award for automation and control earlier in 2006.

Kazzinc is eastern Kazakhstan's largest industrial producer, so constant improvements to environmental performance are critical. This project will notably contribute to Kazzinc's goal of reducing all dust and gas emissions from its metallurgical operations to insignificant levels. The new copper smelter and refinery will allow Kazzinc to produce value added refined copper, rather than just exporting copper concentrate and blister copper.

Kazzinc is a major fully integrated zinc producer with considerable copper, precious metals and lead credits. It employs some 22, 000 people in mining, ore dressing, metallurgy, power generation and mechanical production. The Ust-Kamenogorsk metallurgical complex consists of a 180 000 tpa zinc refinery, a 140 000 tpa lead smelter and a precious metals refinery. Learn more at www.kazzinc.com

Xstrata Technology is a wholly owned subsidiary of Xstrata plc, a major global diversified mining group, listed on the London and Swiss stock exchanges and headquartered in Switzerland. The Xstrata Technology division develops, markets and supports technologies for the global mining, mineral processing and metals extraction industries. Learn more at www.xstratatech.com

MIPAC is a provider of process control, instrumentation and electrical engineering solutions specializing in industries that require continuous process control such as minerals and metals processing. Learn more at www.mipac.com.au.