200 international experts laud the state-of-the-art technology of Nui Phao mine

N.P.M 14:33, 18/10/2022

Nearly 200 industrial mineral experts and fluorspar business leaders globally gathered in Hanoi from October 11-14 for the Fluorine Forum to examine and discuss the supply and demand from mine to market of fluorine mineral, an important mineral in the global high-tech industries. The forum participants highly appreciated the continuous improvement initiatives of Masan High-Tech Materials, a leading supplier of acid grade fluorspar, currently operating Nui Phao mine in Thai Nguyen, Vietnam.

 Foreign experts visit the Nui Phao mine in Thai Nguyen.
Foreign experts visit the Nui Phao mine in Thai Nguyen.

The 2022 Fluorine Forum was organized by IMFORMED (Industrial Minerals Forum & Research Ltd) in collaboration with Masan High-Tech Materials Corporation. This is the first time the Forum has been held in Vietnam.

At the seminar, Mr. William Parry-Jones – Head of Sales and Marketing of Masan High-Tech Materials surprised the delegates with a presentation entitled “Acidspar market – the view from Vietnam”.

As one of the world’s leading suppliers of acid grade fluorspar which is used as a raw material for the production of Hydrofluoric Acid (HF) and Aluminium Fluoride (AlF3), Masan High-Tech Materials focuses and promotes continuous improvement initiatives in fluorspar production. Specifically, as of 2021 the Company has focused on  Process Optimisation, including implementation of short interval control and development of trouble shooting guides and Root Cause Analysis procedures; Equipment optimization procedures and formalized metallurgical inspections; Data Historian Upgrade resulting in  Improved monitoring and troubleshooting capabilities.

The Nui Phao mine has implemented equipment upgrades to maximize the quality of its Acid grade Fluorspar product for the benefit of the customer. The complex flow sheet includes two stage magnetic separation for the removal of residual sulfides; Separate process water circuits to avoid cross contamination with other product streams and maintain circuit stability; an advanced reagent suite to maximize recoveries and minimize the residual organics and hydrocarbons.

On the last day of the Forum, delegates had a chance to tour Nui Phao mine in Dai Tu, Thai Nguyen and got to see how the top-notch fluorspar production facility runs, including key sections like the open pit, ore concentrate processing plant, wastewater treatment area, and discharge points. All the international experts were impressed with the way the mine is set up and run as well as the company’s substantial investment in cutting-edge technology in ore processing and production of advanced high-tech materials. No wonder Masan High-Tech Materials is commended as a role model for responsible and sustainable mining practices in Vietnam. The delegation members were also taken aback by the efforts to use water and energy efficiently in Nui Phao mine operations.

Mike O’Driscoll, Director of IMFORMED, commented “The way Nui Phao mine is organized and run, by the discipline and professionalism in operating the magnificence and grandeur of this site, really shocked and amazed me today when I saw it with my own eyes for the first time. I do appreciate the company’s care and consideration in planning such a secure and efficient visit for nearly 200 people, including delegates of the Fluorine Forum and local journalists”.

Within the same week, on 12 October Masan High-Tech Materials welcomed the Society of Mining Professors delegation to visit Nui Phao Mine within the framework of the 11th SOMP Regional Meeting. The mining professors, who come from USA, Germany, Australia, Japan, Indonesia and India, showed excitement about the leading-edge manufacturing process supported by advanced mining and processing management software that helped Masan High-Tech Materials optimize the recovery rate and thus, enhancing the value of Vietnamese resources.

After successful transformation from a mining business to a high-tech materials manufacturer, Masan High-Tech Materials apparently continues to make the second step forward. It is focusing on research and development of highly applicable products with a view to becoming a global consumer technology business.

Most recently, Masan High-Tech Materials partnered with Nyobolt – a fast charging Lithium-ion battery solutions company based in the United Kingdom. Nyobolt is currently the world’s leading provider of fast charging high-tech battery solutions technology. Nyobolt expects to use Masan High-Tech Materials’ high-tech tungsten material in the battery’s anode coating, giving the battery a record high capacity. Thus, it is possible that through new products and innovations such as Nyobolt’s battery technology, Masan High-Tech Materials will come closer to the consumers who will directly benefit from the new materials technology. In the near future, Masan High-Tech Materials will be more than just a supplier of strategic high-tech materials. The company will cooperate with the world’s leading innovation enterprises to research and develop advanced materials technology solutions and use the very materials they produce to create practical technology products that solve the unmet needs of global consumers and key industries.

The International Fluorine Forum was first launched by IMFORMED in Mexico 2017 encompassing a high-quality programme moderated by experts to examine and discuss fluorine mineral supply and demand from mine to market. Subsequent Fluorine Forums were held in Madrid 2018, Prague 2019, followed by two online formats in 2020 and 2021 due to Covid-19. Throughout the years, the Fluorine Forum has developed over time into a major networking event in the global Fluorine market. This year the event is back in its full form in Hanoi, where Masan High-Tech Materials is the key sponsor for the Welcome Dinner on 11 October and Nui Phao mine visit on 14 October.

IMFORMED was co-founded in 2015 by Ms. Iseme Clarke and Mr. Mike O’Driscoll to provide professional networking opportunities and market research expertise for the global non-metallic minerals industry. This is a useful forum for those who are active or interested in the fluorine mineral supply chain, from the exploration, development, extraction and search for alternative sources of fluorine, through supply and processing, to usage applications and market demand trends.