Toll-refining of Zondereinde’s metal takes place under contract with W.C. Heraeus of Germany. Zondereinde’s PGM concentrate is delivered on a weekly basis to the Heraeus refinery in Hanau near Frankfurt, Germany.
Heraeus produces high purity refined metals (Pt, Pd, Rh, Au, Ag, Ru and Ir) which are credited to Northam for physical distribution and sales to Northam’s customers throughout the world.
Since 1992, all Northam’s PGM metal output was refined in Hanau. More recently, in conjunction with Northam, Heraeus has initiated a three-phase refinery construction and expansion programme in Port Elizabeth South Africa, designed to dovetail with Northam’s potential for incremental growth in PGM production. The first phase of the refinery is operational and currently treats all of Zondereinde’s platinum and palladium production.
Phase 1 of the South African programme, the Fine Metal Refinery (FMR) was commissioned in February 2007. The FMR has the capability to receive Zondereinde’s partially refined platinum and palladium from Hanau, in an intermediate form, and to complete the refining process at the Port Elizabeth facility.
The refining of the balance of the metals (Rh, Au, Ag, Ru and Ir) takes place in Hanau.
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