Industrial Processes

Silica Extraction Plant

New Zealand
Lycopodium was engaged by New Zealand-based technology company Geo40 to design and commission a new facility for the extraction of silica from geothermal fluids in the Taupo region of New Zealand.

The process extracts silica colloid as a by-product from the heated fluids already being used to produce energy on the Ohaaki geothermal field. Once extracted, the silica colloid becomes a marketable specialty product, used in myriad products from paints to manufacturing golf clubs. The process itself also benefits the local environment as it comes with a much lower carbon footprint due to nature doing all the work in dissolving the silica.

Geo40 had an existing contract with NZ’s Contact Energy and Ngati Tahu Tribal Lands Trust to build a Commercial Demonstration Plant, commissioned in April 2018. Having demonstrated the feasibility of the technology, they are now scaling up the operations to greater capacity in partnership with Lycopodium.

Lycopodium performed a preliminary design and a Capital Cost Estimate report in parallel with detailed design for the new plant, along with providing an independent team who conducted a Technical Review of the documentation supporting the detail design and capital cost estimate.

Lycopodium has performed Civil, Structural, Mechanical, Piping, Electrical and Instrumentation design and developed contractor scope of works and custom specifications for Geo40, and has chaired design reviews, HAZID and HAZOP of the Geo40 process.

Furthermore, Lycopodium is performing procurement evaluation and selection recommendations for all site contracts and equipment suppliers, and will provide commissioning assistance to Geo40.

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