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Rinsing of Spent Precious Metal Ores for Heap Leach Decommissioning.
Ch 31 in Environmental Management for the 1990'S SME 1991 :7 pages
Many gold-producing states are requiring rinsing of spent heaps to render the leached ore compatible with the environment and are placing restrictions on effluent ph, cyanide, and metals concentrations. Parameters that may affect efficient rinsing of heaps have been investigated by the U.S. Bureau of Mines in laboratory column studies. Rinse profiles for cyanide, metals, and ph as a function of the volume of water passed through the spent ore are presented. Fresh water rinsing of spent ore in columns showed that rinsing of cyandide was not affected by the rinse solution application rate. Interrupted rinsing with a rest period between applications reduced the volume of water required to meet effluent cyanide concentrations. Chemical oxidation of the effluent with recycle of the rinse solutions reduced effluent cyanide concentrations and the volume of waste solution generated. Water rinsing was not successful in reducing the alkalinity of the cement agglomerated ore. A dilute acid solution had to be applied after cyanide removal to reduce effluent ph levels to specified limits.
Ch. 31 in Environmental Management for the 1990'S; SME, 1991, PP. 225-231
Page last reviewed: September 2, 2020
Content source: National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health Education and Information Division