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Sulphuric Acid on the WebTM Technical Manual DKL Engineering, Inc.

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Acid Plant Database  June 28, 2016

Owner Korea Zinc Company Limited

Young-Poong-Logo2.gif (3546 bytes)

Location Onsan
South Korea
Background A subsidiary of Young Poong, Corporation
Website www.koreazinc.co.kr
Plant -
Coordinates* 35° 25' 46" N, 129° 20' 43" E
Type of Plant Metallurgical
Gas Source Zinc Roaster
Plant Capacity 1,000,000 MTPA
Status -
Year Built -
Technology -
Contractor -
Remarks Products:
98% H2SO4
25% Oleum
Liquid SO3
Pictures Korea-Zinc-Onsan-1.JPG (179170 bytes)  Korea Zinc - Onsan 3.gif (9875 bytes) 
General Onsan Refinery operates the refining facilities for both zinc and lead. The refinery adopts the zinc residue-processing technology that maximizes the recovery of valuable metals from zinc residue and changes the slag environmentally sustainable. Also constructing zinc refinery and lead refinery together in one plant has generated the synergy effects such as higher recovery ratio of valuable metals, use of various-types of raw materials, and lower waste discharge.

Onsan Refinery, characterized as 'Custom Smelter', is able to process various kinds of zinc ores, successfully commercializing innovative technologies such as Direct Leaching Process, QSL process, and TSL process. Direct Leaching Process is a refining technology that directly dissolves the zinc from zinc concentrates in a special leaching process and thereby eliminating the need for traditional roasting and sulfuric acid plants. Presently, Korea Zinc is the only company that uses this process commercially in the world.

QSL process is a process that produces lead bullion through oxidization and deoxidization by dissolving lead concentrate. It is zinc-refining technology that helps save energy and prevent pollution by using only one furnace instead of two. It is an excellent process in that it can process a variety of materials, and uses coal as a power of source, which is rather cheap.

Zinc fuming is a process that recovers valuable metals like zinc, lead, and copper from zinc residue. This process contributes to minimizing environmental contamination by making clean slag, which has much less toxic materials than iron residue and is recycled as construction materials and/or raw material for cement. In addition, this process makes it possible to dispose the residue at the company's discretion; thus, not only it solves the lack of enough lot for pond, which is required for storage of the residue, but it also produces a lot of steam by recovering wasted heat in the process of production.

The Top Submerged Lance (TSL) technology has been designed to solve the disposal problem of residues generated during the refining process, the problem that almost every refinery in the world has in common. This technology recovers valuable metals from by-products generated at the nonferrous metals refining process and turns the residue into environmentally stable insoluble slag by inserting combustible materials like coal and oxygen and causing turbulence, using Lance, which is installed in the upper parts of Smelting Furnace and Fuming Furnace. In a nutshell, this technology has a great advantage in that it processes environmentally instable matters into environmentally stable wastes and recycles them. These efforts for environment paid off as the company was awarded Environmental New Technology by the Ministry of Environment in September 2002.

As mentioned above, Korea Zinc takes advantage of the world best technologies to recover the most valuable metals, discharges the least wastes and uses various materials including the recycled ones. All in all, Korea Zinc becomes and will maintain its presence as the world most competitive refinery.
References -
News June 28, 2016 - About a thousand liters of sulfuric acid leaked from the construction site of a smelter factory in the country's industrial city of Ulsan Tuesday, injuring six workers, firefighters said.  The incident took place at around 9:15 a.m. at a factory owned by Korea Zinc Inc., the country's largest zinc smelter, some 414 kilometers southeast of Seoul.  The chemical at some 70 percent concentration leaked as six workers were disassembling pipes for maintenance. All six are suffering from burns, with three of them in critical condition, authorities said.  Firefighters said they are investigating whether there is any secondary damage from the accident.  Earlier in the day, about a ton of waste chemicals comprised of hydrochloric acid, nitric acid, hydrofluoric acid and water spilled out of a tank due to chemical reactions in Gumi, 261 kilometers southeast of Seoul.  The firefighters completed cleanup of the spilled chemicals at around 5:30 a.m., about three hours after the incident was first reported.  They said no harmful chemical substances were detected near the site of the accident. 

April 20, 2009 - GEA Bischoff received an order for 1 horizontal dry electrostatic precipitator from Korea Zinc Co. Ltd. The off-gases from a new lead smelter in Onsan, South Korea will be cleaned.  With this contract Korea Zinc Co. Ltd. continuous the longtime cooperation with GEA Bischoff, who since the year 1993 supplied 11 dry and 20 wet precipitators as well as various other gas cleaning equipment to this client.

November 26, 2008 - Ausmelt Limited (AET) has signed a Licensing Agreement with Korea Zinc Co. Ltd (Korea Zinc) for the construction of two new Top Submerged Lance (TSL) technology furnaces for lead smelting.  The two new furnaces will be built at Korea Zinc.s production facilities in Onsan, Korea. They will recover lead from up to 70,000 tonnes per annum of lead-bearing materials, including lead secondaries.

MTPD - Metric Tonne per Day           STPD - Short Ton per Day
MTPA - Metric Tonne per Annum      STPA - Short Ton per Annum
SA - Single Absorption
DA - Double Absorption

* Coordinates can be used to locate plant on Google Earth