Whilst gold remains the main target for miners, particularly at the smaller scale, the allure of many of the base and specialist minerals like tin and tantalite is becoming stronger. APT is experiencing an unprecedented interest in base and specialist mineral plants from virtually all geographical areas of the globe, and so the hunt to target many minerals has begun. Price trends
Not only are the prices of these minerals attractive, but demand is strong and the upward trend is likely to continue. To put the value of producing tantalite concentrate into context, let us consider an ore with a hypothetical recovery yield of 1000 grams per tonne of tantalite concentrate. The recovery value of this tantalite would be of the order of $207 per tonne, equivalent to a gold recovery of about 5.2 grams per tonne Au!
This modest tantalite recovery would therefore constitute a very viable mining proposition. Similarly, recovery of tin, tungsten, chromium and other bulk minerals offer attractive returns.
*Acknowledgements to InfoMine
Many of the mineral concentrates occur in the upper oxide environment where they are relatively easy to mine and extract. Deposits are well known and many are being actively targeted by artisanal miners. The more valuable bulk minerals like cassiterite (tin), tantalite, wolframite (tungsten) and chromite readily concentrate in the natural environment, so alluvial and elluvial deposits are commonly worked.
All of the minerals referred to above have high specific gravities relative to the host and are therefore easy to recover and concentrate via gravity. Gravity methods are employed universally by artisanals to recover these minerals from rivers and rubble beds. APT process flowsheets take account of the mineral species present, their degree of liberation and the particle size distributions. Although the final result is clean and simple, a great deal of thought goes into achieving this result. Where crushing and milling is necessary, the appropriate modules are inserted. Attached below is a flowsheet for the recovery of course and fine tantalite from an alluvial material.
APT Plants for bulk minerals
APT has developed a range of plants specifically to target the high value bulk minerals. As with all APT plants, these units are simple, robust and offer excellent value for money. Energy requirement has been kept to an absolute minimum so that generators can be used to power the entire process. The plants are available in a range of sizes; 10, 20, 80, 250tph and can be configured with APT’s famous RG scrubbers to target alluvials and loose matrix only, or they can include a crushing and milling section as appropriate.
APT is primarily a mineral processing company who manufactures its solutions, rather than a just an equipment manufacturer. We have a vast experience in mineral processing and our associate laboratory Peacocke, Simpson and Associates, has over 29 years of experience in testing ores and feed materials. Our emphasis is upon innovative, smart solutions to result in the desired result without simply defaulting to conventional systems. Solutions are therefore not only functional, but minimalistic and efficient.
APT plants: target many minerals besides gold.