Patents Represented by Attorney, Agent or Law Firm Edward A. Steen
  • Patent number: 7641801
    Abstract: A method and system of removing or decreasing waste liquor manganese concentration to less than about 1 mg/L total manganese without the precipitation of significant amounts of magnesium. The method and system include steps for treating the waste liquor using three separate circuits in which in the first circuit, manganese is reduced, for example, from about 2 g/L to <500 mg/L using pH adjustment with a suitable neutralizing agent; and in the second circuit, the final target manganese level is achieved by oxidative precipitation using a suitable oxidizing agent. Part of the precipitated manganese product, e.g., MnO2, is recycled to the oxidative precipitation circuit as seed and the balance proceeds to a third circuit wherein the precipitated manganese product is re-dissolved, and then recycled to the first neutralization circuit. In the first neutralization circuit and the second oxidative precipitation circuit, the process conditions are selected to minimize the precipitation of magnesium, e.g., Mg(OH)2.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: February 28, 2007
    Date of Patent: January 5, 2010
    Assignee: Vale Inco Limited
    Inventors: Mohamed Buarzaiga, Eric Devuyst, Julian Edwards, Joe Paventi
  • Patent number: 7344584
    Abstract: A process for the production of extra fine spherical metal powders by chemical vapor deposition and dissolution techniques, including metal carbonyls, wherein the metal containing process gas is propelled upwardly through a heated reactor. By employing an upward gas flow as opposed to the conventional downward gas flow, a closer approximation of theoretical plug-flow velocity profiles are achieved thusly resulting in a desirably narrower size particle distribution obviating or reducing the need for subsequent classification techniques.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: September 3, 2004
    Date of Patent: March 18, 2008
    Assignee: Inco Limited
    Inventors: Kenneth Stark Coley, Armen Markarian, Shadi Saberi, Randy Shaubel, Rinaldo A. Stefan, Lloyd Matt Timberg, Eric Bain Wasmund
  • Patent number: 7309374
    Abstract: In contrast to current industrial practice where alloying powders are added to starting powder metallurgy compositions either as powder mixtures or fully prealloyed powders, the present invention posits a diffusion bonded nickel-copper precursor additive mixture for direct one step addition to the starting powder metallurgy master blend composition. Segregation and dusting are substantially reduced and the mechanical properties of the resultant compact are improved.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: April 4, 2005
    Date of Patent: December 18, 2007
    Assignee: Inco Limited
    Inventors: Tajpreet Singh, Scott Thomas Campbell, Thomas Francis Stephenson, Ouan Min Yang
  • Patent number: 7169208
    Abstract: A composition for use with alloys including extra-fine nickel powder dispersed with a hydrophobic inorganic dispersant which is preferably high-purity silica treated with hexamethyldisilazane (fumed silica). The composition breaks and prevents the agglomeration of the nickel powder, thereby preventing weaknesses in alloys, like steel for example, formed with the nickel powder. A method for making an alloy with the composition includes mixing the nickel powder with other metals and/or nonmetals and the hydrophobic fumed silica to form an alloy blend, pressing the alloy blend, and sintering the alloy blend.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: June 10, 2004
    Date of Patent: January 30, 2007
    Assignee: Inco Limited
    Inventors: Scott Thomas Campbell, Thomas Francis Stephenson, Tajpreet Singh
  • Patent number: 7033555
    Abstract: A low temperature contaminant limiting process for lithiating hydroxides and forming lithiated metal oxides of suitable crystalinity in-situ. M(OH)2 is added to an aqueous solution of LiOH. An oxidant is introduced into the solution which is heated below about 150° C. and, if necessary, agitated. M may be selected from cobalt, nickel and manganese. The resultant LiMO2 becomes crystallized in-situ and is subsequently removed.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: May 6, 2003
    Date of Patent: April 25, 2006
    Assignee: Inco Limited
    Inventors: Feng Zou, Mohammad Jahangir Hossain, Juraj Babjak, Quan Min Yang, Samuel Walton Marcuson
  • Patent number: 7020307
    Abstract: A rock fragmentation analysis system is provided for analyzing blasted rock (or other fragmented particles) to assess quality of a blast for efficient processing of subsequent operations in a mine, a quarry, etc. The system includes a hardware system and an image processing system. The hardware system includes a camera and a lighting system. The lighting system illuminates an area of the mine, quarry, etc. where a load haul dump (LHD) vehicle passes through. Once the LHD vehicle passes through the illuminated area, the camera provides video signals of scoop-top view images of the LHD vehicle to the image processing system via known communication means, such as hard-wired and wireless. The image processing system receives the video signals, captures the scoop-top view images, evaluates the images for subsequent fragmentation analysis, and performs the rock fragmentation analysis. The image processing system performs these functions using several software modules.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: February 15, 2002
    Date of Patent: March 28, 2006
    Assignee: Inco Limited
    Inventors: Eric Herbert Hinton, Mario Paventi, Peter Saturley, Rodney David Hale, George K. I. Mann
  • Patent number: 7004326
    Abstract: A mineral separation process includes wet-grinding the ore to liberation of minerals, oxidizing the slurry using air, hydrogen peroxide or other oxidants and floating the valuable minerals at a pH between about 9.0 and 10.0 with a xanthate as collector, and a combination of a polyamine and a sulfur containing species as depressants for arsenide minerals. This depressant suite effectively depresses the flotation of arsenide minerals with no effect on the flotation of the valuable minerals.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: October 7, 2004
    Date of Patent: February 28, 2006
    Assignee: Inco Limited
    Inventors: Zongfu Dai, Julie-Ann Arlene Garritsen, Peter Frederic Wells, Manqiu Xu
  • Patent number: 6951960
    Abstract: A method for regenerating an amine extractant used for recovery of metals involves contacting a liquid organic phase containing an amine complexed with one or more metals with an aqueous solution substantially free of chloride ions to strip the one or more metals from the organic phase. The stripped organic phase is then contacted with a solution of hydrochloric acid to regenerate the amine extractant which can then be recycled in a production process.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: July 16, 2002
    Date of Patent: October 4, 2005
    Assignee: Inco Limited
    Inventor: Jean-Jacques Robert Perraud
  • Patent number: 6926969
    Abstract: The invention relates to a process for the production of sintered porous bodies, to porous bodies produced correspondingly using the process, and to their use. With the solution according to the invention, sintered bodies which achieve improved properties, such as an increased surface area, deformability of the structures at room temperature or modification of the initial pore volume, are to be produced. To this end, at least one sintering-active powder which forms at least one intermetallic phase or mixed crystals is applied to the surface of a porous basic body. Heat treatment is to be carried out subsequently, in which intermetallic phases or mixed crystals which increase the specific surface area can be formed.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: October 4, 2002
    Date of Patent: August 9, 2005
    Assignees: Inco Limited, Fraunhofer-Gesellschaft zur Forderung der angewandten Forschung e. V.
    Inventors: Alexander Bohm, Hartmut Gohler, Dirk Naumann
  • Patent number: 6757642
    Abstract: A method is provided for performing wedge analysis for assessing wedge occurrence and instability in underground openings, such as mines, caves, and the like. The method scales full-span wedge predictions, accounting for both occurrence and instability potential of possible wedge geometries. The method also generates predictions for wedge failure potential and support demand to result in more economical support design for wedges.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: November 10, 2000
    Date of Patent: June 29, 2004
    Assignee: Inco Limited
    Inventors: Samantha Jane Boudreau, Mark Stephen Diederichs, Douglas Jean Hutchinson
  • Patent number: 6746511
    Abstract: A continuous method of manufacturing a liquid dispersion containing submicron metal or metal compound particles inside a liquid bath. A metal-containing fluid with carrier gas mixture is bubbled through the liquid bath and predetermined conditions in the bath cause the fluid to decompose to form the submicron sized metal or metal compound particles in the liquid.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: July 3, 2002
    Date of Patent: June 8, 2004
    Assignee: Inco Limited
    Inventors: Eric B. Wasmund, Richard S. Adams, John Ambrose, Armen Markarian, Dirk Naumann, Lloyd Timberg, Rinaldo Stefan
  • Patent number: 6701631
    Abstract: A compass adapted to measure direction and dip values with or without the assistance of the earth's magnetic field. A laser pointer module and a magnetic needle module are interchangeably arranged in a body having an attached reference angle plate appropriately set to measure horizontal and vertical angles. The compass is especially useful in underground mines or other locations having magnetic anomalies where conventional magnetic compasses are rendered useless. Both embodiments are capable of taking readings when the compass is set in an upright or upside-down position.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: December 23, 2002
    Date of Patent: March 9, 2004
    Assignee: Inco Limited
    Inventors: Rogerio Noal Monteiro, Carl Richard Laamanen
  • Patent number: 6652603
    Abstract: A method for removing sodium sulfate from nickel and ammonia containing aqueous effluents. The effluents, typically from a nickel hydroxide production process, are cooled to or below 30° C. to crystallize and precipitate the sodium sulfate and dewater the effluent. The sodium sulfate is retrieved and the remaining solution is recycled back to the nickel hydroxide production process.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: June 29, 2001
    Date of Patent: November 25, 2003
    Assignee: Inco Limited
    Inventors: Juraj Babjak, Feng Zou
  • Patent number: 6609617
    Abstract: A trommel for classifying and sorting objects. The trommel is an open cylinder including a drive plate and a feed plate. A series of supporting rods extend between the drive plate and the feed plate. Disposed therebetween is a rod support ring dividing the trommel into a classifying zone and a discharge zone. A plurality of vibrating rods, floating in the vicinity of the rod support ring and anchored to the feed plate, oscillate and flex as the trommel rotates causing preselected sized objects to pass through the vibrating and support bars while the remaining objects are passed into the discharge zone with reduced clogging.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: April 8, 2002
    Date of Patent: August 26, 2003
    Assignee: Inco Limited
    Inventors: Ralph Edward Slayer, Barry Ross Bowerman, Kenneth Erwin Scholey
  • Patent number: 6608913
    Abstract: A self-contained mapping and positioning system for underground mining is provided that is capable of mapping the topography of a region, such as a mine tunnel, and further being able to use the mapped data to determine the position of an object, such as a mining vehicle, within the mine tunnel. The system includes an inertial navigation system, a central processing unit, a three-dimensional database, a three-dimensional camera system, an operator console and a survey system having a three-dimensional laser scanner. The survey system using the three-dimensional laser scanner produces point cloud data, i.e., a set of data points representing the topography of the region. The point cloud data is stored within a storage device until the entire region is mapped and then transmitted to the operator console to be post processed. After post processing, the data is exported to the three-dimensional database and the indexed for ease of use by the central processing unit.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: July 17, 2000
    Date of Patent: August 19, 2003
    Assignee: Inco Limited
    Inventors: Eric Herbert Hinton, Donald Ray Murray
  • Patent number: 6576205
    Abstract: A process for decreasing the crystallinity of nickel hydroxide by generating and supplying large numbers of heteronuclei into the nickel hydroxide producing reaction system. Nickel sulfate and sodium hydroxide are initially forcefully and intimately combined to form a supersaturated solution of heteronuclei. These heteronuclei are introduced into a nickel powder containing slurry wherein nickel hydroxide having a crystallinity FWHM value of greater than about 0.5° is generated.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: September 4, 2001
    Date of Patent: June 10, 2003
    Assignee: INCO Limited
    Inventors: Juraj Babjak, Feng Zou, Stephen Joseph Baksa, Victor Alexander Ettel
  • Patent number: 6569224
    Abstract: A hydrometallurgical process for the recovery of nickel and cobalt values from a sulfidic flotation concentrate. The process involves forming a slurry of the sulfidic flotation concentrate in an acid solution, and subjecting the slurried flotation concentrate to a chlorine leach at atmospheric pressure followed by an oxidative pressure leach. After liquid-solids separation and purification of the concentrate resulting in the removal of copper and cobalt, the nickel-containing solution is directly treated by electrowinning to recover nickel cathode therefrom.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: June 19, 2002
    Date of Patent: May 27, 2003
    Assignee: Inco Limited
    Inventors: Derek George Eagland Kerfoot, Eberhard Krause, Bruce John Love, Avinash Singhal
  • Patent number: 6527345
    Abstract: A method for excavating a tunnel rock face by drilling a pattern of lifter holes and line holes. The line holes ensure the grade or slope of the excavation meets specification while reducing the need for cleaning out the face. A longitudinal band of lifter holes is drilled into the tunnel face at an acute angle in relation to the substantially perpendicular reference axis emerging from the tunnel face. A series of line holes, disposed opposedly adjacent to the lifter holes, are drilled at a smaller acute angle. The lifter holes are drilled deeper than the line holes and they do not intersect. Explosives are loaded into the lifter holes. The line holes are expendable and encourage fracturing of the rock.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: May 10, 2001
    Date of Patent: March 4, 2003
    Assignee: Inco Limited
    Inventors: Wayne N. Lidkea, Gregory Robert Baiden
  • Patent number: 6506229
    Abstract: A continuous method for generating substantially submicron sized metal particles in a liquid dispersion of known viscosity. Metal carbonyl gas and an inert carrier gas, with an optional dilutant gas, are introduced into a heated liquid bath wherein the metal carbonyl decomposes into submicron sized pure metal particles. The particles are suspended in the liquid. The liquid is processed to form slurries and pastes.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: January 8, 2001
    Date of Patent: January 14, 2003
    Assignee: Inco Limited
    Inventors: Eric Bain Wasmund, Griffith Oswald Richard Williams, Kirt Kenneth Cushnie, Randal Mark Shaubel
  • Patent number: 6461521
    Abstract: A cost-effective broad temperature method for removing troublesome low valent sulfur compounds from aqueous streams. The process utilizes sulfur dioxide, oxygen and at least one metal catalyst (which may be added to or already entrained in the aqueous stream) to oxidize the low valent sulfur compounds.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: November 14, 2000
    Date of Patent: October 8, 2002
    Assignee: Inco Limited
    Inventors: Branka M. Tandi, Eric A. Devuyst, Domenic Canini