Amursk POX hub

Processing center for refractory gold concentrates of the Russian Far East

Quick facts

Location Khabarovsk Territory, Russia
Ownership 100%

Albazino, Mayskoye, Kyzyl, Pescherny

Processing 225 Ktpa, POX + cyanidation
Production start date 2012
Employees 624
Key 2021 numbers

* Already accounted for in production at operating mines.
** Including concentrate from Mayskoye, Kyzyl and 3d parties.


The Amursk POX hub is Russia’s first pressure oxidation plant, and one of Polymetal’s largest projects that combines operations around one processing facility. The hub currently comprises two high-grade refractory gold deposits, Albazino and Mayskoye, and three processing facilities — the Albazino and Mayskoye concentrators, and the Amursk hydrometallurgical plant that uses POX technology for processing refractory ore.

The hub was commissioned in 2012 and achieved its design throughput and recovery levels in 2013. Since its launch, the hub has successfully gone through three stages of expansion aimed at increasing the plant’s processing capacity and, in turn, strengthening Polymetal’s commercial position on the concentrate market vis-à-vis third party off-takers. More importantly, expansion of the plant provides more development options for refractory gold projects in the Company’s portfolio, most notably Kyzyl, from which low carbon concentrate is processed at the POX facility.

The POX plant currently runs at its expanded design capacity.

Location History Metallurgy and processing Expansion projects

The POX hub is based in Amursk, a city with a population of approximately 43,000 people, located on the northern bank of the Amur River in the Khabarovsk region of the Russian Federation. It is located 350 km from Khabarovsk, the largest city and administrative centre in the region, and 54 km from the large industrial city of Komsomolsk-on-Amur. The production site is accessible by the city road network, with the railway spur located only 4 km away.


The creation of the Amursk POX hub was a key project for the Group’s long-term growth strategy. After careful consideration, Amursk was chosen as the site for our operations for several strategic reasons. Not only did the region offer relatively inexpensive power sources, a qualified workforce and developed transportation infrastructure, but there was an abundance of refractory ore in the far-eastern region with a major lack of processing capacity. So in 2007, the Group secured several land plots intended for the construction of the hub, and after comprehensive engineering and design works, construction began in 2010. Construction finished towards the end of 2011 and the first gold was poured in Q2 of 2012.

The POX plant currently runs at its expanded design capacity.

Pressure oxidation, also known as autoclave leaching, was selected as the preffered processing option for the Albazino and Mayskoye refractory gold deposits. This process is particularly well suited for treating refractory ores that give low recovery rates when directly leached with cyanide. There is solid engineering support behind the project, including:

  • Extensive technological testing by SGS Lakefield and Polymetal Engineering
  • Basic and detailed design by SNC Lavalin
  • High-pressure OEMs from Japan, US and the Netherlands
  • Equipment installation, personnel training, commissioning and ramp up closely supervised and consulted by DevMin
  • Experienced operators and engineers recruited from base metal POX plants in the FSU

The POX facility is fully automated, with a processing design capacity of 225 ktpa of concentrate, depending on the sulphur grades. The external infrastructure (power, gas and water) and reserved land plots have the capability to accommodate a two-fold increase in the capacity of the Amursk POX facility.

The Amursk autoclave facility was specifically designed to accommodate the complementary Mayskoye and Albazino concentrates, with careful blending to achieve optimised gold recoveries and minimal operating costs. The facility is fully automated.


The approval and commencement of Stage 3 expansion at the Amursk POX plant was an important milestone in 2016. The increase in POX capacity enableв Polymetal to retain approximately 50% of the Kyzyl concentrate for in-house treatment, as opposed to a third-party offtake, and improved effective gold recovery from concentrate, as well as bring down processing and transportation costs. The key additions to the equipment were a second oxygen plant, an autoclave discharge thickener, separate filters for thickener underflow and upgrades for heat recovery and water treatment.

The POX de-bottlenecking project finished on time and now operates at planned capacity.

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