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05.22.2012

Befesa Salt Slags, full chemical treatment for salt slags and SPL

Befesa Salt Slags is the UK’s leading waste recycling partner for the primary and secondary aluminium industry and provides environmental solutions for the recycling of aluminium slat slag, spent pot liner (SPL), foundry sand, drosses and their aluminium wastes produced.

The company was established at its current Whitchurch 15 acre site set in a rural location in September 2000. It currently employs 44 people and operates a salt slag and SPL treatment plant with a capacity of over 95,000 t along with a dross crushing and recycling capability of over 25,000 t. This is the only full chemical treatment facility in the United Kingdom for salt slag and SPL.

In the salt slag and SPL treatment process, aluminium metal and other metals are mechanically removed from the material matrix by a process of crushing and screening. This process produces a fine dust which is then chemically processed to separate and recover soluble salts and insoluble oxides (principally alumina and silicon oxide).

The primary function of the dust treatment process is to:

  • Slurry the dust in water, dissolving all the soluble salts (sodium & potassium chloride) and fluorides.
  • Hydrolyse all the water-reactive compounds.
  • Chemical oxidation of cyanides.
  • Flocculate out all the non-water soluble and filter off as a product.
  • Recover the soluble salts by a process of evaporation/crystallization as a product.

The products from the recovery operation are aluminium metallic, aluminium oxides and sodium / potassium salts.

Befesa Salt Slags operates to the highest standards. It operates a greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions inventory system and has produced a GHG emissions inventory report verified by Aenor in 2012 and is currently accredited to the standards BS EN ISO 9001:2000, BS EN ISO14001:2004 and OHSAS 18001.

Process diagram

Process diagram

View of Befesa Salt Slags site in Whitchurch, United Kingdom

View of Befesa Salt Slags site in Whitchurch, United Kingdom

Nitrogen storage area

Nitrogen storage area

Emission abatement plant area

Emission abatement plant area

Gas treatment area facility

Gas treatment area facility