Gold Mining for sale

Role of Chemicals in Gold Mining, Processing and Recovery


At Camachem we assist gold mining companies source the right type and grade of chemicals for their gold mining process. In order to assist you source the right chemicals, we provide an overview of key gold mining and processing chemicals.

Extracting value of gold is not just about removing the gold-bearing rock from the ground. This is just the first step in the process of mining gold. Complex extraction processes are involved in the isolation of pure gold from the rock. First, the large chunks of rock are broken down. With the help of crushers, the ore is reduced to tiny pieces. It turns into gravel-like material and which is then entered into rotating drums filled with steel balls. The ore is turned into powder in these drums. It then goes through a series of hydrometallurgical or pyrometallurgical processes. Hydrometallurgical processes involve the use of aqueous chemistry for the extraction of gold. Whereas pyrometallurgical processes involves the use of heat for the extraction and purification of precious metals like gold.

Top Gold Producing Countries


The world has an insatiable hunger for gold. Every year around 2500 tons of gold is mined to be used for various purposes. The single largest use of gold is in the jewelry industry. Since pure gold is too soft it is alloyed with silver, copper, or both to achieve the required hardness and strength. Gold is also extensively used in dental bridges and crowns. For this purpose, it is mostly alloyed with silver, copper, platinum, or palladium to increase strength. Due to its properties of high electrical conductivity and corrosion resistance, it is used in the plating of electronic contacts, transistor bases, and semiconductor silicon chips. Its use ranges from dental fillings to satellites.

China is the leading gold-producing country, closely followed by the Russian Federation and Australia. Following is a list of top gold-producing countries and their annual gold production.

List of Top Gold Producing Countries and their Annual Gold Production


 

Countries

Annual Gold Production

1

China

383.2 tons

2

Russian Federation

329.5 tons

3

Australia

325.1 tons

4

United States

200.2 tons

5

Canada

182.9 tons

6

Peru

143.3 tons

7

Ghana

142.4 tons

8

South Africa

118.2 tons

9

Mexico

111.4 tons

10

Brazil

106.9 tons

11

Uzbekistan

104 tons

12

Indonesia

82.6 tons

13

Kazakhstan

76.8 tons

14

Sudan

76.6 tons

15

Papua New Guinea

72.9 tons

16

Burkina Faso

62 tons

17

Mali

61.2 tons

18

Argentina

53.1 tons

19

Tanzania

48 tons

20

Colombia

46.3 tons

21

Democratic Republic of the Congo

45.6 tons

22

Côte d’Ivoire

41.9 tons

23

Zimbabwe

38.7 tons

24

Philippines

38.3 tons

25

Chile

37.8 tons

26

Turkey

37 tons

27

Suriname

32.8 tons

28

Dominican Republic

31.8 tons

29

Venezuela

27.8 tons

30

Guinea

27.5 tons

31

Guyana

25.5 tons

32

Kyrgyz Republic

24.2 tons

33

Senegal

16.8 tons

34

Mongolia

16.3 tons

35

Mauritania

15.1 tons

36

Egypt

14.9 tons

37

Madagascar

14.5 tons

38

Nigeria

14 tons

39

Iran

11 tons

40

Ecuador

11 tons

41

Sweden

8.1 tons

42

New Zealand

7.8 tons

43

Finland

7.7 tons

Source: World Gold Council

Types of Chemicals Used in Gold Mining


Chemicals are widely used in the gold mining processes. Every step of mining requires special chemicals for specific purposes. Typical gold mining processes are either hydrometallurgical or pyrometallurgical. Hydrometallurgical processes include the flotation and leaching process, whereas pyrometallurgical processes include smelting and refining process. The chemicals used in these processes are categorized as flotation reagents, leaching chemicals, smelting chemicals, and refining chemicals.

Potassium Amyl Xanthate for sale

Potassium Amyl Xanthate (PAX) packed in both wooden containers and drums, ready for export.

Flotation Reagents


The flotation process is a widely used hydrometallurgical method to separate gold from gold containing ores. Flotation reagents are chemicals that help in the attachment of air bubbles to the minerals and bringing them up at the surface. When on the surface, these reagents further help to form a froth layer which makes it easier to remove the minerals. Flotation reagents can be classified into three main categories i.e., collectors, frothers, and modifiers.

1. Collectors


Collectors are chemicals that selectively attach to the surface of the mineral (gold) making the mineral hydrophobic. Hydrophobicity is necessary for air bubble attachment. Collectors are used to modify the surface properties of gold in flotation process. They either bond on the mineral surface or be held on it by absorption. This helps the air bubbles to attach to the mineral.

Most popular collectors are:

2. Xanthates


Xanthates are water-soluble salts that are very important in mining for the extraction of ores. These salts are used in the mineral processing processes as flotation reagents. These salts differ in their selectivity and strength in recovering the mineral.

Xanthates include:

  • Potassium Amyl Xanthate (PAX): PAX is a strong and non-selective collector.
  • Sodium Ethyl Xanthate (SEX): SEX is a highly selective weak collector.
  • Sodium Isobutyl Xanthate (SIBX): SIBX is a generally good collector.
  • Sodium Isopropyl Xanthate (SIPX): SIPX is a selective collector having a higher recovery rate than SEX.
Sodium Isobutyl Xanthate for sale

Packaged Sodium Isobutyl Xanthate (SIBX).

3. Dithiophosphates


Dithiophosphates are phosphorous oxoanions. They are water-soluble salts that have properties that affect selectivity and froth character. They are more effective in alkaline flotation processes. Dithiophosphates are more selective than the xanthate salts.

Dithiophosphates include:

Other collectors include Dithiophosphate 25, Dithiophosphate 25S 95%, Amino-Dithiophosphate, Ethyl Thiocarbamate, Isopropyl Ethyl Thionocarbamate, Collector BLK-301 and Collector T-610.

4. Frothers


Frothers are chemicals that perform key functions in the flotation process. They are responsible for reducing the surface tension for the formation of froth. They help stabilize bubble size and in the hydrophobic particle attachment to air bubbles. These compounds also help stabilize the foams. Frothers include:

  • Pine Oil: Pine Oil is a natural oil frother and is quite extensively used worldwide.
  • Methyl Isobutyl Carbinol: Methyl Isobutyl Carbinol is a widely known weak frother. It produces brittle froth.

Other available frothers at Camachem include Pine Oil replacement high compound alcohol for non-ferrous mines (CC-321) and CC-903 for sulfide ores.

5. Modifiers


Modifiers are compounds that are added to optimise the separation process. Adding these reagents results in a modified and controlled flotation process.

Modifiers include:

  • Sodium Cyanide: Sodium Cyanide can be used both as an activator as well as a depressant. It is quite strong as a depressant of Iron and Zinc sulfides. As an activator, it improves flotation.
  • Sodium Cyanide for sale

    Sodium Cyanide briquettes packaged in drums before export.

  • Caustic Soda: Caustic Soda is a pH modifier which is used to raise the pH.
  • Soda Ash: Soda Ash is also a pH modifier which is used to raise the pH.
  • Copper Sulfate Pentahydrate: Copper Sulfate Pentahydrate is used as an activator in Zinc Sulfide and Iron Sulfide minerals.
  • Sodium Metabisulfite: SMBS is used as a depressant in Zinc Sulfide and Iron Sulfide minerals.
  • Hydrated Lime: Hydrated Lime is used as a depressant for pyrite.
  • Lead Nitrate: Lead Nitrate is used as an activator of antimony sulfide and reactivator of copper sulfide.

Other modifiers include isopropyl alcohol and oxalic acid.

Leaching Chemicals


Leaching is a gold extraction process in which the ore is treated with certain chemicals which help to convert the precious metals into soluble salts while impurities remain insoluble. It is gold extraction method from low-grade ore by converting gold to a water-soluble complex.

Leaching chemicals include:

  • Sodium Cyanide: It is extensively used in cyanide leaching for the extraction of gold.
  • Activated Carbon: Activated Carbon helps in the adsorption of gold-cyanide solution.
  • Caustic Soda: It is responsible for the elution stripping of adsorbed gold on activated carbon.
lead nitrate for sale

Preparation of lead nitrate for our mining client.

  • Lead Nitrate: It acts as an accelerator in gold cyanidation.
  • Sodium Bisulfite: Sodium Bisulfite detoxifies cyanide in gold extraction.
  • Sodium Metabisulfite: It also detoxifies cyanide in gold extraction.

The solution then becomes ready for electrowinning. In this process, a strong electric current is made to pass through the solution from the positive and negative terminals of the container. This causes gold to collect on the negative side. In this way, gold is recovered from the chemicals.

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Activated carbon for sale

The solution then becomes ready for electrowinning. In this process, a strong electric current is made to pass through the solution from the positive and negative terminals of the container. This causes gold to collect on the negative side. In this way, gold is recovered from the chemicals.

Packaging and loading of activated carbon. Activated carbon is a crucial chemical during gold cyanidation. It is available in different sizes and CTC levels depending on clients’ requirements at their mine.

Smelting Chemicals


Smelting is a process in which the negative terminals of the electrowinning cells are melted in a furnace at a high temperature. Then a chemical mixture called flux, which may contain dense soda ash along with other chemicals, is added to the molten material to separate gold from the terminal metal. The molten gold is then poured into molds to transform the liquid into solid gold bars. These are low-purity bars that are sent to refineries for processing.

Refining Chemicals


Refineries remove impurities that remain after smelting. There are various refining processes like Cupellation, chlorination, and Wohlwill process etc. After being refined by either of these processes the refined gold is then sent to be used in whichever way it is needed.

Packaging and Shipping of Chemicals


All the chemicals are packaged and shipped with care. Depending upon the chemicals ordered, they are typically packaged in:

  • Sealed wooden boxes.
  • Sealed wooden drums.
  • Sealed steel drums
  • Woven bags
SMBS for sale

Camachem loading SMBS for gold mining client.

Chemical Samples


We, at Camachem are always ready to facilitate our clients with samples so that they can test the chemicals and their compatibility with the ore.

Gold Mining Chemicals at Camachem


We, at At Camachem we supply various mineral processing chemicals suitable for the mining sector especially gold processing. We have a variety of mining chemicals including flotation reagents, leaching chemicals and other processing chemicals for minerals and ores such as copper, lead, zinc, silver, gold, and nickel. We are ready to serve and provide you with the right gold processing chemicals. Contact us ([email protected]) for FREE consultation and pricing.