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Challenges

It's a technology that's evolving to keep up with ever-increasing demand. Now, many projects depend solely on the performance of their heap-leaching facilities for successful operations. With the demand for copper and gold maintaining, or even rising to, high levels, the pressure is on—and increasing—for technology to meet the challenges of the industry.

Mine operators and their stakeholders recognize the importance of obtaining the most technically advanced analyses to drive leaching performance. At the same time, they're constantly on the lookout for suitable and cost-effective equipment and systems for every heap-leaching project.

Understanding the time-rate-of-recovery dynamics in heap-leach operations is mandatory for analyzing the financial performance of any mining operation. It's also a must for the successful execution of a project. To make the most of their mineral recovery work, companies must ultimately be able to appropriately and properly define heap-leach facility-design criteria and operational parameters.

Capabilities

Optimizing performance through dynamic modeling

By breaking them down into discrete sections, we can model heap-leach operations dynamically. Optimized algorithms can identify where it is most advantageous to leach, based on metrics that maximize recovery and minimize solution inventories. This information helps operators make informed choices when they're considering future leaching operations-and-loading scenarios. Overall, it helps to optimize the performance of the mine, too.

Leach pad and pond design

We design heap-leach pads with metallurgical balance in mind, giving operators the ability to monitor pads' performance with greater accuracy. Geotechnical aspects of each facility are analyzed, including settlement and deformation, to provide a stable, long-term configuration.

Upgrading to on/off leach-pad systems

Our experts can assist you in identifying cutoff grades that support the use and operation of on/off pads. Our dynamic modeling techniques also incorporate financial analyses to make the most of these opportunities.

Agglomeration

At times, the resource you're after is found in fine-grained-matrix material. We perform testing analyses and design agglomeration systems to increase hydraulic-conductivity performance, while still allowing for the timely extraction of the resource you're trying to recover.

Planning and review of column leach test work

Our clients' project teams work with our metallurgical experts to provide thorough test work programs. The resulting data and information is then put into our dynamic heap-leach models to optimize the design and performance of each facility.

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What it takes to win

Joe Lombard
Much as we appreciate the award recognition, outstanding project management is really just the way we do things at Hatch. We start with the basics. Safety. Communication. Cost and schedule. And most of all, client satisfaction.
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