In 2016, JSC VNII Galurgii (St. Petersburg), a leading research and design institute in the potash, salt and related industries, celebrates 85 years. Established in 1931 on the basis of Salt Laboratory of the USSR Academy of Sciences, it played a decisive role in the formation and development of the potash industry in the USSR.
In the course of long-term scientific and practical research, the Institute studied characteristics of the geological structure of potash deposits, improved and elaborated methods of their exploration and geological-economic assessment, developed technologies that ensure safe mining operations in potash and salt mines. Developments of VNII Galurgii made it possible to move away from a laborious and inefficient drill and blast tunneling method to mechanised tunneling using tunnel boring machines.
The Institute developed theoretical bases of halurgic and flotation processing methods of water-soluble minerals and created production technologies of various grades of potassium chloride (fine-grained, dust-free and granulated) and chlorine-free potash fertilisers (potassium sulfate, potassium magnesia, magnesium ammonium fertilisers).
According to scientific and technological developments of VNII Galurgii, Uralkali’s mine groups Solikamsk-1, Solikamsk-2, Solikamsk-3 and Berezniki-4 were designed and commissioned. VNII Galurgii is one of the creators of the high-tech Baltic Bulker Terminal in the seaport of Saint-Petersburg, rated among Europe’s best logistics complexes for transshipment of mineral fertilisers from rail cars to seagoing vessels.
Uralkali (www.uralkali.com) is one of the world’s largest potash producers and exporters. The Company’s assets consist of 5 mines and 7 ore-treatment mills situated in the towns of Berezniki and Solikamsk (Perm Territory, Russia). Uralkali employs ca.11,000 people (in the main production unit). Uralkali’s shares are traded on the Moscow Exchange.