I had written Lynas and asked if the lamp facility will ever support the processing of HREE's.
Here is their answer.
Thank you for your recent emails. Phase 1 of the LAMP is expected to produce 480 tonnes of unseparated HREE. We will probably sell this product to a toller to separate them out. For such small tonnage it was not deemed economic to build additional separation facilities at the LAMP. The fact is the CLD at Mount Weld does not have a high distribution of HREE so there’s little point in building greenfield separation capacity for these products when we can utilise spare capacity elsewhere.
Wonder if Lamp Phase 2 will process HREE? No indication that it would have that capability in Lynas’ reply to Naughty. Thank you for posting, Naughty, we all appreciate you.
Wonder how not having the capability to process HREE affects development of the Duncan Deposit, if at all? Is there any info available regarding Duncan Deposit mining and refining plans? Thank you. Best wishes for a wonderful Thanksgiving.
Hi Naughty, great post and question. I too was under the impression that the HREE's would be processed at LAMP, but just because they are "consigning" the REE's in a tolling agreement does not mean they won't receive significant income from the HREE concentrate… A tolling agreement defined:
"An agreement by a toller with an owner of raw materials to process the raw material for a specified fee ("toll") into a product with the raw material and the product remaining the property of the provider of the raw material."
The key statement here being "the product remaining the property of the provider of the raw material."
I wonder if the HREE concentrate may be feedstock for the performance metal and specialty guys like Neo (or LCM). The price of the Heavy's is significant but the actual process of extraction may be out of NC's vision of horizontal integration. I'm sure Lynas will do whatever gives the greatest value...
What is a toller? If Lynas starts to mine the Duncan deposit in 2013, would they be able to processs the Hrees mined from it? Will Lynas include the processing of Hrees in the second phase of the LAMP? I thought that Lynas would add the capacity to process Hrees into their long range plans. It has been my hope that they would process Hrees from other miners possessing them in Australia long term. Since the Hrees command higher prices and are in shorter supply, I thought this would be part of their long term strategy.