Mineral Sands Process


Mineral sands

Mineral sands are concentrations of heavy minerals found in ancient beach, dune or river systems, such as rutile, ilmenite, zircon and monazite.


Mineral sands mining can involve both dry mining and wet (dredge or hydraulic) operations to extract a heavy mineral concentrate.


Heavy mineral concentrate is transported from mine sites to a mineral separation plant for processing into final products.


A mineral separation plant separates the heavy mineral concentrate to recover the valuable minerals of zircon, rutile and ilmenite.


Closure planning begins before mining starts and where practicable, reclamation occurs progressively with ongoing mining activity.

Iluka and its predecessor companies have over 60 years’ industry experience in native vegetation and agricultural reclamation. The company has an established record of environmental management and the successful reclamation of land disturbed by mining.

Iluka’s on-site reclamation work is complemented by environmental research partnerships with academic institutions including Virginia Tech, University of Western Australia, and the University of Adelaide.

Mineral sands – part of everyday life

Iluka’s final products – zircon, high grade titanium dioxide (rutile, synthetic rutile) and ilmenite – are transported to more than 250 direct customers, with sales in more than 40 countries.
Iluka’s products are used in an increasing array of applications – home, workplace, medical, lifestyle and industrial uses.

Learn more about mineral sands products and their uses here.