Supporting the

Nitric Acid Industry

Metallix Refining provides downstream nitric acid plant cleaning, recovery and processing of precious metals catalyst.

Precious metals catalyst recovery

From our locations in the USA, Asia and Europe; our teams can provide responsive technical support to site operators for Project Management, Logistics and Refining.

  • Full plant cleaning
  • Individual components
  • Redundant components

Many plants during the course of their day to day maintenance planning, accumulate a variety of precious metal bearing material. These small lots can be processed easily and expediently without the need to wait for a scheduled turnaround.

  • Sweeps / Fines
  • Residues collected from vessel opening / Inspection
  • Accumulated Raschig Rings
  • Gauze Supports / Megapyr


Migration of precious metals catalyst

During the course of the ammonia oxidation reaction, platinum group metal (PGMs) are lost from the catalyst. These losses travel downstream through the heat train, in the form of a PGM oxide. Over time, a build up of scale forms on exposed surfaces, reducing thermal efficiency.

As the vapor oxide cools, it becomes a particulate. This dense residue, rich in PGMs, settles throughout the heat train and acid storage tanks.

Recovery of PGM spent catalyst provides valuable revenue for a sustainable future, while respecting natural resources and the environment.

Chemical Cleaning (non-aggressive)

Recognized internationally, non-aggressive mild chemical treatment is an industry approved methodology for the removal of surface PGM oxides. This nitric acid plant cleaning treatment is an expedient and effective method to maximize PGM recoveries, while respecting safe working parameters.


Destructive Processing

Destructive processing is performed on out of service PGM bearing components. This aggressive treatment ensures all PGM and non PGM values are achieved. Destructive processing is performed at Metallix’ own purpose built leaching facility located in Greenville, North Carolina USA, where carefully controlled safety and security protocols are maintained.



Hydroblasting provides plant operators with a non-aggressive, chemical free treatment for the removal and recovery of surface PGM oxide, both tube and shell side. Hydroblasting is proven to be a highly effective, non-invasive method, which can generate high PGM recoveries.


Storage Tank Cleaning

Nitric acid for precious metal recovery storage tanks can often be excluded from scheduled maintenance and recovery operations, especially when there is limited storage capacity and demand is high. However, nitric acid storage tanks can often produce high concentrations of spent precious metal catalyst (PGMs). This is the last point of recovery in the process stream and should be monitored vigilantly to avoid losing valuable PGMs with product.

Nitric Acid cleaning plant facility at Metallix
man walking upstairs in a nitric acid cleaning plant facility

Contact one of our precious metal Buyers today to learn more about our process, or schedule a pickup.