Canadian Mining Journal

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Diverse Range of World-Class Services Offered to Mining Industry

The Saskatchewan Research Council (SRC) offers Smart Science SolutionsTM in uranium, potash, diamonds, oil shale, rare earth elements and other commodities. SRC's world-renowned experience and research background allows us to continually...



The Saskatchewan Research Council (SRC) offers Smart Science SolutionsTM in uranium, potash, diamonds, oil shale, rare earth elements and other commodities. SRC’s world-renowned experience and research background allows us to continually improve the reliability of processes and analyses, helping ensure our clients’ success.

Mineral Processing and Metallurgical Testing

Mineral Processing is a technology that is a critical service need in North America. SRC is excited to offer this service as one of many in a long list of superior services we provide to the mining and minerals industry.

Providing lab, bench and pilot plant-scale testing are some of the key mineral processing services that SRC offers, along with developing process models for potash, uranium, rare earth minerals, gold and base metals, among others.

SRC recognizes that mining companies are challenged to reduce the environmental footprint of their operations. We work diligently to ensure that process efficiencies are identified and that environmentally sustainable mineral processes are developed.

According to Bryan Schreiner, Chief Geoscientist at SRC, one area of focus is on increasing the mineral value while reducing costs of tailings management. “While trying to improve the processes to increase mineral products, we are also looking into reducing the amount of water used in order to reduce the amount of effluent and tailings. This will also decrease the potential for soil and water contamination.” He adds, “We are also investigating ways to treat existing tailings and effluent ponds to facilitate the disposal of tailings, slimes and wastewater.”

In a province where potash and uranium account for approximately 30 per cent of the world’s supply and rare earth elements are becoming increasingly valued for their properties used in batteries and technological instruments, SRC is pleased to offer this integral testing service. By delivering high-quality processing and metallurgical testing for the mineral-producing industry, SRC will ensure leading-edge support capabilities are available for their clients’ success here and around the world.

The Mineral Processing and Metallurgical Testing services build upon existing capabilities and strengths offered in SRC’s Geoanalytical Laboratories and the Advanced Microanalysis CentreTM.

Advanced Microanalysis CentreTM

In early 2010, SRC’s Advanced Microanalysis CentreTM opened to offer clients in the mining and minerals industries leading-edge services that were previously unavailable in Saskatchewan. The Centre, along with our Geoanalytical Laboratories, supplies all of the necessary analytical tools for mineral exploration for everything from sample preparation right through to trace element analysis. This is all performed in one convenient location.

With another expansion announced last fall to keep up with ever-increasing industry demands, the Centre has become a one-stop shop for clients both in the province and across the country.

“This expansion will allow the Advanced Microanalysis Centre to provide an even more robust array of services to a broader client base here in Saskatchewan and well beyond,” said SRC Vice-President of Mining and Minerals, Craig Murray. “These services will bring added value and complement the services already offered by our Geoanalytical Laboratories.”

The Centre addresses growing industry demand to test and analyze a wider range of mineral samples, providing resource companies access to new technologies, analytical services and expert data interpretation. Small- and medium-sized mining businesses now have access to the same world-class analytical facilities used by major companies.

Geoanalytical Services

SRC has been providing high quality uranium analysis for more than 35 years. In the past year, SRC’s Geoanalytical Laboratories have expanded to meet the increase in exploration of uranium and gold, as well as the needs of our clients. Our labs have been instrumental in providing high quality analytical resources that have helped in the development of uranium exploration and mining in Saskatchewan and around the world.

Licensed by the Canadian Nuclear Safety Commission (CNSC), the laboratory safely receives, processes and archives radioactive samples.

SRC’s Geoanalytical Laboratories recently purchased a high resolution mass spectrometer (HR-ICPMS) in order to provide high-quality isotopic data to clients. By studying three isotope systems (lead, lithium and boron), possible research areas for vectoring toward uranium deposits will be identified.

Several methods for the determination of gold and other rare earth elements (REE) are performed at the lab including fire assay and gold grain recovery. The laboratory also participates in a proficiency testing program organized by CANMET for base metals and precious metal assaying.

SRC’s Diamond Services facilities processes customer samples in a controlled environment, ensuring that confidentiality is constantly maintained. All areas of the recently expanded diamond facility are under 24-hour surveillance with additional security personnel available to monitor sample processing. Services provided in this lab include kimberlite indicator mineral recovery, micro and macro diamond recovery and diamond description and weighing.

For nearly four decades, SRC’s Geoanalytical Laboratories have been providing expert services to the exploration and mining industries by offering a diverse range of analytical mineral exploration packages. From kimberlite processing to diamond recovery to uranium, potash and gold analyses, the Geoanalytical Laboratories deliver customer satisfaction with relevant, timely and cost-effective services.

For a complete list of service offerings, go to www.src.sk.ca or email info@src.sk.ca.


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