Case Study: FRP Platforms Installed in a Copper Refinery to Withstand Corrosion

0565-SXEW Platforms Main0565-SXEW Platforms DetailMore than 10,000 square feet of Strongwell’s fiberglass operating platforms and walkways were installed at a copper refinery in Piedras Verdes, Mexico.

The refinery uses a process called solvent extraction electrowinning (SXEW) to extract copper from the ore. An electrolyte liquid used in the process is highly corrosive to aluminum and steel, so corrosion resistant FRP grating, handrails and structural platforms were a natural choice for the project.

Product: Platform and Walkway System
Process: Pultrusion, Open Molding

  • EXTREN® Series 625 fiberglass reinforced polyester
  • 2" DURAGRATE® V.E. molded grating
  • SAFRAIL™ handrail system
Sizes: EXTREN® structural shapes and plate:

  • 8" x 3/8", 10" x 1/2" Channels
  • 2" x 1/4", 3" x 1/4", 4" x 1/2" Angles
  • 10" x 5" x 3/8", 8" x 4" x 1/2" I-Beams
  • 10" x 10" x 1/2" Wide Flange Beam
  • 1/2" Plate
For: Piedras Verdes, Mexico copper refinery

The FRP platforms are much more durable than aluminum or steel and the low electrical conductivity of FRP makes the operating platforms much safer for workers. Additionally, the lightweight FRP shapes, grating and handrail made the installation easier and faster.

FRP platforms are a superior solution for corrosive operating environments like those found in SXEW copper refineries. As a result, fiberglass has become the material of choice for such operations.

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