After travelling on the overland conveyer from the primary crusher, the ore arrives at the concentrator which uses a series of complex mechanical and chemical processes to turn it into the final product, ready for export. This product is called concentrate, a fine powder, containing between 25 and 30 per cent copper and smaller amounts of gold and other minerals.
The concentrator can process up to 100,000 tonnes of ore each day.
About the concentrator
The Oyu Tolgoi concentrator is the biggest industrial unit ever built in Mongolia. It contains enough steel to construct the Eiffel Tower three times, and took more than 15.7 million individual work hours to build.
Construction of the concentrator required the excavation of 6,068,286 cubic metres of earth and the laying of 171,055 cubic metres of concrete. A total of 20,927 tonnes of steel and 688,727 meters of electric cables were used in the construction of the concentrator plant.
The concentrator covers an area 255 metres long and 144 metres wide. The concentrator was commissioned on 27 December 2012, produced its first copper concentrate on 1 February 2013, and commenced shipments to customers on 9 July 2013. In February 2015, the one millionth tonne of copper concentrate was produced and shipped.