Australia’s Nickel Adventure


A history of nickel exploration and mining in Australia.
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A phenomenal metal’s erratic life

The nickel industry in Australia has been a modern mining phenomenon that is now a few years beyond its 50th birthday.
Perhaps no other metal in Australia’s mining history has had a more erratic health graph, at times in seventh heaven and others like it has been in cardiac arrest.

There was a frenetic nickel boom that ended as a big bust in the early 1970s and nickel was again on the commodity price surfboard as part of the commodities boom of the early 2010s.

The sulphide nickel discoveries at Kambalda and the bonanza grade deposits at Cosmos and Silver Swan put exploration and the share market into over-drive, while the lateritic nickel push that saw Murrin Murrin and Cawse evolve provided a mixture of success and anxiety, with the latter coming from the big learning arc with processing technologies.

But these are just some of the stories covered in this book that has taken Ross Louthean and Carl Knox-Robinson nearly three years to produce.
Over the decades companies were made on nickel discoveries and production but many who did not make the grade either converted to new roles or went to the corporate graveyard.

In 2016 the nickel mining sector was again in the trough, with Australia seen as being overshadowed by pig nickel from laterite mines in Indonesia and the Philippines.

However, the future for both sulphide and lateritic nickel has elevated dramatically since, largely through nickel sulphate being in the mix with lithium, cobalt and graphite in the rapidly growing electric vehicles market and for high quality batteries.
This will be a major growth market and exactly where nickel will sit does not have an immediate answer but the role should be somewhere between strong and spectacular.

Additional information

Weight 0.8 kg
Dimensions 30 × 21 × 2 cm


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