British Columbia Mine Reclamation Symposium

Measured rates of copper and zinc leaching in the International Kinetic Database Morin, Kevin A. (Kevin Andrew), 1955-; Hutt, Nora M.; Ferguson, Keith D., 1952-


The objective of the International Kinetic Database (IKD) is to characterize bulk reaction rates in alkaline, neutral, and acidic minesite drainage. The IKD currently contains 307 kinetic tests from around the world, and is growing. Of the 307 tests, 185 provided leaching rates for copper and zinc. Scatterplots of these rates against pre-test parameters such as solid-phase copper and acid-base accounting failed to reveal any clear relationships. Consequently, leaching rates cannot be predicted accurately from pre-test characterization of a sample. Some correlation was noted among leaching rates, sulfate (acid) production, neutralization rate, and aqueous pH. However, the strength of these correlations was too weak to allow the accurate estimation of one parameter from another. All these observations point to the importance of kinetic testing in the assessment and prediction of mine drainage, and the inability to estimate rates prior to testing.

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