In situ acid leaching of copper tailings deposits: A case history

The results of a field-scale study involving in situ leaching of copper ore tailings using sulphuric acid as the leaching agent, injection wells to introduce the leaching solution and extraction wells to recover the copper-enriched pregnant leaching solution are presented. The study was performed at an abandoned tailings disposal site using a battery of injection and extraction wells. The medium was characterized through the determinations of physical, chemical, mineralogical, and hydrodispersive properties based on laboratory and field tests, including a tritium tracer test, a pumping test, particle size analyses, and hydraulic conductivity tests. Numerous horizontal strata with different hydraulic conductivities were identified. A previously developed model was used to simulate the leaching of copper ore tailings. Although the study confirms the feasibility of using in situ leaching for recovery of residual copper from tailings deposits, the efficiency of the technology depends significantly on the medium stratigraphy and hydraulic conductivity.
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Summary: No abstract is available for this paper
Publication: CIM Bulletin
Author(s): R. Levac, R.A. McIvor
Issue: 1056
Volume: 94
Year: 2001
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Summary: During the operation of a mineral processing plant, the unit processes are investigated by analyzing the data extracted by means of stream sampling. The data structure is identical to the time series form. Data analysis is a crucial step in understanding the plant performance. To control the plant performance efficiently, it is very important to avoid sampling errors, which is impossible. However, it is possible to minimize these errors. The factors influencing these errors are divided into...
Publication: CIM Bulletin
Author(s): C. Ketata, M.C. Rockwell
Issue: 1056
Volume: 94
Year: 2001
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Summary: Tailings from the nickel refinery in Copper Cliff, Ontario, consist of fine silicates mixed with a variable amount of conductive and magnetic minerals mainly associated with sulphides and iron oxides. Subsequent oxidation of sulphide-rich phases within the tailings results in the formation of an acidic leachate that may contain significant concentrations of trace metals. Mapping the spatial distribution of regions of higher sulphide concentration therefore provides insight into the distributi...
Publication: CIM Bulletin
Author(s): J. Shang,B. Morris, P. Howarth
Issue: 1056
Volume: 94
Year: 2001
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Summary: Sulphide concentrates may exhibit self-heating to various degrees during storage or shipping, the worst cases presenting a serious hazard from fire and SO2 emission. Based on measurements of heating rates on a wide variety of concentrate samples in a special apparatus, combined with field experience, a methodology has been developed which allows concentrates to be rated for their heating potential. This has proven to be very useful in practice, for example, in deciding on the need to take...
Publication: CIM Bulletin
Author(s): F. Rosenblum, J. Nesset, P. Spira
Issue: 1056
Volume: 94
Year: 2001
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