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In Situ Leaching Research in a Copper Deposit At the Emerald Isle Mine.

D'andrea DV; Larson WC; Fletcher LR; Chamberlain PG; Engelmann WC
NTIS#: PB 271 904 :43 pages
The Bureau of Mines and El Paso Mining and Milling Company conducted a cooperative in situ leaching research program at the Emerald Isle Mine near Kingman, Arizona. The objective of this research was to develop in situ leaching methods for 200,000 tons of ore exposed in the pit bottom and also 3 million tons of ore under 200 feet of overburden adjacent to the pit. The research included core drilling for fragmentation analysis, inplace permeability testing, seismic surveys, blasting tests, blast vibration measurements, inplace leaching, and ground water monitoring. A 15,000-ton test area in the pit bottom was blasted and leached inplace for 117 days. This successful test was followed by leaching 100,000 additional tons of unblasted pit bottom ore. Two test blasts, under 205 feet of overburden and extending to 290 feet, were detonated in an area near the open pit. The second blast was detonated because the first blast did not create adequate permeability for leaching. Pit bottom leaching was discontinued and the test area under 200 feet of overburden was not leached because the company terminated operations at the Emerald Isle Mine. Based on the research completed, an expanded in situ leaching system was designed, but not implemented, to recover copper from a 1,500,000-ton area at the Emerald Isle Mine.
Publication Date
Document Type
IH; Report of Investigation;
Fiscal Year
NTIS Accession No.
NTIS Price
Identifying No.
RI 8236
NIOSH Division
Source Name
NTIS#: PB 271 904
Page last reviewed: September 30, 2022
Content source: National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health Education and Information Division