Top Blown Rotary Converter

Video – Top Blown Rotary Converter


Top Blown Rotary Converter Top Blown Rotary Converter pour

The Top Blown Rotary Converter (TBRC) is a pyrometallurgical furnace that can be used for the recovery, upgrade and refining of metals; this includes:

  • Multi-purpose melting
  • Recovery of metals such as iron, copper and zinc from slags and process wastes
  • Recovery of precious metals from waste electrical and electronic equipment (WEEE)

It is the only one of its size in the UK.

Applications and Capability

  • Enables scale up from laboratory testing to pilot scale to help establish mineral recovery rates and process dynamics
  • Can be used to develop and evaluate pyrometallurgical recovery options
  • Advanced smelting equipment which can be used for treating anode slime or lithium recovery and the oxidation or reduction of metals.

Key Features

  • 30 litre nominal capacity (120 litre total volume but held at an angle of 25°)
  • Operating temperature up to 1600°C
  • Rotation speed from 1 to 15rpm
  • Tilting angles: 0° for loading, 65° for firing,130° for tapping
  • Batch loading during process via vibratory feed system
  • Door mounted water-cool oxy-fuel burner rated at 120kW
  • Off-gas handling. Thermal oxidiser will treat any volatile organic compounds (VOCs), dioxins and furans
  • Bag filter plant for dust recovery


The Top Blown Rotary Converter is part of a suite of pyrometallurgical pilot facilities from kilogram to tonnage scale at the Institute and is fully supported by laboratory scale analytical, characterisation and process modelling facilities.

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