The mobile LST laboratory, as designed and constructed by IHC Robbins, is capable of determining the heavy mineral (+2.85sg) content for 50-100 samples per day using Lithium Heteropolytungstates in water, commonly referred to as LST.
LST heavy liquid is a non-toxic alternative to traditionally used Bromoform and TBE. LST per litre is more expensive than traditional heavy liquids and as such LST recovery during the separation process is critical. IHC Robbins has developed a vacuum assisted recovery system for rapid recovery of LST from the heavy portion (+2.85sg) and lights (-2.85sg), which recovers >95% of the LST and re-cycles the LST ready for immediate use.
A similar vacuum assisted recovery system is used for recovering the LST/de-ionized water after washing of the heavies (+2.85sg) and lights (-2.85sg), with the subsequent mixture evaporated on a semi-continous basis to recover the LST before re-use. A combination of the two systems results in an overall LST recovery for re-use of >99%.
The mobile LST lab is designed to operate with limited infrastructure requirements, only requiring a single power and water connection to operate. It is easily transportable for use across various locations and is ideally suited to exploration programs to be completed in remote areas.
Julian Graham, IHC Robbins Metallurgist, whom was instrumental in the development of the mobile LST laboratory stated:
IHC Robbins first began trials with LST heavy liquid in 2013. After six months of testing, all previous Bromoform operations were ceased. A recovery system for LST was developed, aimed at overcoming issues previously restricting LST from use as a replacement for conventional heavy liquids.
The system has since been used across multiple drill programs and large scale test programs where it has proven to be successful in achieving consistent heavy mineral determinations whilst significantly reducing analytical costs and turnaround time for results. Through years of hands-on experience at the Brisbane-based laboratory facility, the system has been refined and is now offered as a containerised package for clients wishing to adopt or make the switch to non-toxic LST heavy liquid as an analytical tool in their production and/or exploration operations.
IHC Robbins offers the following:
- design and supply of the LST unit to suit client requirements;
- fabrication, pre-delivery assembly and commissioning;
- testing and packing of all components ex-works Brisbane; and
- training, either at the clients’ nominated site or at IHC Robbins’ metallurgical facility, located in Brisbane, Australia.
In addition, IHC Robbins can offer a mobile Sample Preparation Station, which is designed to operate in conjunction with the mobile LST laboratory and is used for sample preparation, determination of slimes, oversize and preparing samples ready for heavy liquid separation.