An alternative mining concept

Author(s): D. Hiam-Galvez, P. Krawchuck, D. Harding, R.Brown, W. Slabbert
CIM 2018, Vancouver, British Columbia, May 6-9, 2018, Canadian Institution of Mining, Metallurgy and Petroleum


In Situ Recovery (ISR) is an alternative mining method that enables valuable metals and minerals to be extracted without the need to physically mine the rock. It produces almost no waste rock or tailings which can dramatically reduce the environmental impact of mining operations. The BIOMOre project is an example of this concept, an EU funded ISR project within the Horizon 2020 funding scheme. The objective is to develop advanced technological concepts for the ISR of metals from deep ore deposits applying a combination of channeling and indirect bioleaching. A total of 23 organizations from nine countries are participating on this project. The advantages and potential challenges for applying ISR to deposits will be discussed, along with Hatch’s experience in a number of studies, covering key issues and options to overcome the technical and economic challenges for the commercial-scale application of ISR.