Optimizing heap leach solution balances for enhanced performance

Pennstrom, W. J. ; Arnold, J. R.
Organization: Society for Mining, Metallurgy & Exploration
Pages: 6
Publication Date: Jan 1, 2000
This paper focuses on solution-balance management around heap-leach operations. Experience has shown that increased leach recoveries can be achieved by utilizing various leach-solution recirculation techniques. The most prominent solution-recirculation technique is intermediate leaching. The net effect of intermediate leaching is to increase recovery plant performance by increasing solution concentration tenors, to increase metal recovery by increasing the total leach time and to decrease the overall capital expenditures required for metal-recovery facilities. The adverse effect on the flow of cash from increased metal inventories in the recirculating solutions is offset by increased metal recovery and lower operating costs per unit produced.
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