Jakarta – The Agency for Assessment and Application of Technology (BPPT) has completed an audit of STAL (Step Temperature Acid Leach) process technology at the nickel laterite processing pilot plant owned by PT Hydrotech Metal Indonesia (HMI), Thursday (6/5) in Bogor, West Java. Meanwhile, STAL technology is a hydrometallurgical nickel and cobalt processing technology, developed by PT Trinitan Metals and Minerals Tbk (TMM), with the stock code PURE, and owned by HMI as a subsidiary of TMM.
The results of the STAL technology audit show that at this stage of the leaching process, this technology can produce nickel recovery ranging from 89 to 91%, and cobalt from 90 to 94%. Meanwhile, the STAL pilot plant has also been able to produce MHP (Mixed Hydroxide Precipitate) with a Ni content of more than 35%, where this MHP product can be used as raw material for the manufacture of electric vehicle batteries.
Director of the Centre of Mineral Resources Development Technology (PTPSM) of BPPT, Dr. Ir. Rudi Nugroho, M.Eng said that nickel recovery with STAL technology can reach 89 to 91%. This is much better than AL (Atmosphere Leaching) which is only 50 to 70%, and slightly different from HPAL (High Pressure Acid Leaching) which is around 95 to 96%. According to Rudi, with this slight difference in quality, STAL technology has advantages in terms of equipment and operations which are simpler than HPAL.
“It takes special skills to operate HPAL. The equipment is more complex, such as the tanks used must be able to operate with a certain pressure in accordance with the High Pressure Acid Leaching standard,” said Rudi Nugroho.
Furthermore, Rudi Nugroho appreciated the presence of the Trinitan Industrial Development Assessment Center (TINDAC) as a development tool. According to Rudi, the commitment from the private sector, in this case TMM, is very large to issue technological innovations, by creating an ecosystem, working together between stakeholders.
Meanwhile, President Director of TMM, Petrus Tjandra hopes that the synergy that has been built with BPPT can continue, especially in the development of derivatives of STAL products, so that they can make a real contribution in strengthening the sovereignty of the Republic of Indonesia on basis of research and innovation.
“Indonesia needs the presence of capable processing technology innovations such as STAL technology, which is national technological innovation and able to take advantage of the natural wealth on Indonesian soil, by processing them to produce products that have added value,” Petrus said.
Present on the same occasion, Budiman Sudjatmiko as the Chief Executive of Operational Cooperation (KSO) for Bukit Algoritma Area said that if we can develop this technology (STAL technology) with research, and get domestic and foreign investment, then Indonesia will become the World Battery King that will power up the entire engine, build the world’s economy and civilization.
“Therefore, as the Chief Executive of KSO Bukit Algoritma Area, which we built in Sukabumi covering an area of 888 hectares, I invite TMM to cooperate so that the R&D continues to be developed and TMM can use our facilities. The manufacturing is here, but we can develop the research there. We also invite BPPT to use the facilities there. We can provide. Let’s work together,” Budiman said.
TMM’s recent development of STAL technology has also received support from the Coordinating Minister for Maritime Affairs and Investment, Luhut Binsar Pandjaitan. Reporting from the official website of the Coordinating Ministry for Maritime Affairs and Investment, Coordinating Minister Luhut expressed his support for the development of new technology from the nation’s children, while conveying his wish for domestic products to continue to advance. In addition, Coordinating Minister Luhut also advised all parties to continue developing STAL technology, while at the same time hoping that Indonesia could attract suitable investors for the development of this technology. (*)