Chromium is present in nature in a variety of minerals, with the one that can be economically mined being chromite (iron chromium oxide FeCr2O4). Sources of chromite occur abundantly in South Africa, Kazakhstan, Zimbabwe, Turkey and India. The products resulting from the mining and refining of chromite are ferrochromium and chromium metal. Chromium is highly resistant to corrosion and stable at high temperatures. That’s why it is widely used in the production of stainless steel, superalloys, nichrome, and in chromium plating.
The quality and type of chromite (high-chromium, high-iron, or high-aluminium chromite) vary amongst regions and influence the ore’s value and processing costs.
Traditionally chromite is analysed by wet chemistry techniques. Samples are often sent to an off-site laboratory (sometimes based in a different country), and results can take weeks to return and be acted upon.
The dealers who are buying the ore on site need a rapid answer, as immediate payment is expected. The requirement for a rapid, simple analysis (carried out by non-laboratory staff) at each mine makes field-portable energy-dispersive X-ray fluorescence (EDXRF) spectrometry the ideal analytical technique. Field-portable XRF can also be used during the production process to analyse ore concentrates, tailings, etc.
Designed to withstand the harshest environments, the X-MET8000 Expert Geo provides the superior performance required for geochemical analysis throughout the mining process. It is portable, easy to use, and helps make process decisions onsite fast. By considerably reducing the number of samples sent to a laboratory, the X-MET helps you save both time and money.