Case Study: Atlantic Gold’s Moose River Operation

Featured Equipment

  • 2 x Falcon SB1350 Gravity Concentrator, 1 x Sepro SLR3000 Leach Reactor

Background

The Moose River site is a historic mining area in Canada’s eastern province of Nova Scotia. Inactive for the past 80 years, Atlantic Gold’s new mine and mill was commissioned in late 2017 and reached commercial production in early 2018. Nameplate capacity of the plant was 250tph.

Challenges

  • Testing during the feasibility study showed very high gravity recoverable gold values ranging from 50-70%, average of 61%.
  • Testwork showed that a gravity circuit would reduce tailings grades by over 70% (0.11 to 0.03 g/t Au) and decrease cyanide consumption by 30%.
  • Modelling predicted that 53% of the gold would report to the gravity circuit during operation, accounting for approximately 4,000 oz per month.
  • A high performance, reliable gravity recovery circuit would be key to achieving these results at the operational scale.

Solutions

  • Gravity circuit processing 300tph (1/3 of the mill circulating load)
  • 2 x Falcon SB1350 gravity concentrators and 1 x Sepro SLR3000 Intensive Leach Reactor
  • Automation system controlling the gravity concentrators and leach reactor
  • Collaboration between Sepro, Atlantic Gold and Ausenco (the plant design engineers) throughout the commissioning process
  • Follow up visit from Sepro’s gravity recovery experts 3 months after commercial production for further optimization

Results

  • Reduction in required intensive leach time from 24 hours to 18 hours, enabling a 25% increase in intensive leach capacity.
  • 58% of gold reporting to the gravity circuit (vs. 53% prediction)
  • 4,400 oz per month being produced by the gravity circuit (vs. 4,000 oz per month prediction)
  • Final bullion purity of over 94% with less than 2% impurities

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