BRITISH COLUMBIA – Kettle River Resources of Greenwood, BC, is investigating the possibility of recovering gold from the tailings of the former Phoenix copper-gold mine nearby. The company has contracted International Metallurgical and Environmental to review the economics of the project. Approximately 12 million tonnes of tailings are stored in two ponds at the mine.
Kettle River noted in a news release that the tailings do not conform to 43-101 standards, but historical reports indicate gold values of between 0.1 and 0.6 g/t. The former mine treated ore with a 0.98% Cu and 1.1 g/t Au grade. It’s gold recovery was in the 65% range.
“Historically, gold recovery in the Phoenix milling process was significantly lower than the copper recovery due to a portion of the available gold being associated with non-copper sulphide mineralization (typically pyrite). These sulphides, which are available in the tailings materials, can be concentrated by flotation processes to produce a gold-bearing concentrate assaying in the range of 15 to 30 g/t Au. The tailings contain about 3% sulphide mineralization by weight,” said the company.
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