SAMI MAKNI1, REMI LAPOINTE2, CHRISTINE CROTEAU1 & DAISUKE SATO2
2Project Côté Gold (Iamgold and SMM)
IAMGOLD’S Côté Gold Project is a Greenfields open pit gold mining project located approximately 125 km southwest of Timmins, Ontario, Canada. Côté’s mineralization is free-milling. However, grindability testing on several samples from the Côté Lake deposit indicates that the majority of the material is very competent and resistant to SAG milling. A typical SAG mill configuration, even with high ball loads, would not enable processing of this material in an energy-efficient manner. Testwork conducted at COREM using HPGR technology confirmed that this option provided metallurgical and economic advantages over SAG milling in a traditional flowsheet. In addition to lower operational costs, the use of HPGR technology induced micro-cracking of the samples tested which enhanced cyanidation leach kinetics. Therefore, HPGR was selected over SAG milling in the comminution flowsheet. This paper summarizes the results from the comminution and cyanidation testwork program that led to the selection of HPGR technology.
HPGR, cyanidation, gold ore, micro-cracking