First Quantum Minerals, Ltd
Northwest Province, Zambia

Kansanshi Copper Oxide Ore Circuit Upgrade

The Kansanshi concentrator sulphide circuit was expanded at a brownfield site to target a nominal throughput of 8 million tonnes per annum (tpa). Fluor performed engineering for the copper-gold project. The mine is 15 kilometres north of Solwezi.

Client's Challenge

First Quantum Minerals (FQM) is the 80 percent owner of the Kansanshi facility, where sulphide and oxide ores are treated separately. The sulphide circuit was built to target a 4 million tpa sulphide throughput.

Following commissioning of the project in 2005, an upgrade was implemented to target an 8-million-tpa throughput. Fluor's project targeted another upgrade, to 12 million tpa. The mine's workforce numbers about 1,500 people.

Fluor's Solution

Fluor's scope of work was to provide engineering and design services to support procurement and construction of plant equipment for treating the targeted 12 million tpa of sulphide ore.

The scope also included (for the oxide plant) two countercurrent decantation thickeners and a new gravity concentrator. Engineering services comprised civil, structural, architectural, mechanical, and piping design.


Fluor efforts focused on operations with similar equipment at FQM's Kansanshi and Frontier facilities, using those at Frontier as a basis for design. This allowed a commonality of spares holding between the two operations.