Fluor engaged the talents of both the Redwood City, California and Houston, Texas home offices to execute the engineering and procurement scope of work. To extract the copper, the ore must be oxidized with oxygen-enriched air, yielding copper matte and sulfur dioxide. In the past, this process was environmentally destructive, but the Mitsubishi process has now virtually eliminated pollution issues.
Close to 99.9% of the sulfur dioxide is captured and chemically changed into sulfuric acid. The 500,000 metric tons of sulfuric acid is then sold for use in fertilizers and other chemical products.