Silver Leaching

Manganese Silver Ore Treatment Method

The present is to discuss some of the current silver-treatment plants and also reviews briefly some of the older practices in important silver-mining areas since closed down. The greater part of the world’s production of silver is derived from the refining of the base metals, particularly lead ores, and complex ores of lead, copper, antimony, and zinc. Most of these ores are concentrated by flotation methods, and the concentrates smelted.

There are silver ores, however, where the base-metal content is too low to justify the above conventional form of treatment, and cyanidation offers the most economic recovery method.

The previous pages have been devoted to the treatment of gold and silver ores in which the recovery of silver, because of the relatively small amount present, is not ordinarily of economic importance. There are, however, certain mining areas where the recovery of the high silver values is or has been the principal metallurgical problem.

Table 91 gives some of the more important cyanidation and flotation data obtained in laboratory tests on relatively pure samples of silver minerals.


The ores of the Cobalt area were remarkable for their high content of silver and for the complex assemblage of minerals found in the veins and enclosing ….Read more

Gold and Silver Leaching by Cyanidation

Introduction to Gold and Silver Leaching

The cyanide leaching process is the most important method ever developed for extracting gold from its ores. The early development of the process is attributed to a Scotchman, John Stewart Mac Arthur, in collaboration with the Forrest brothers. The method was introduced into South Africa in 1890. From there it spread to Australia, Mexico and the United States. Now it is used in practically all the major gold mining camps of the world.

The reasons for its widespread acceptance are economic as well as metallurgical. It usually obtains a higher recovery of gold than plate amalgamation and is easier to operate than the chlorine or bromine process. It produces the final product in the form of practically pure metal. Thus the production from a large cyanide mill will be represented by a comparatively small gold bar, which is easy to transport. Accordingly gold mines can be located in relatively inaccessible districts served only by aeroplane or mule train.

However, the gold metallurgist must be familiar with the other processes of gold treatment, such as amalgamation and flotation, as they are frequently used as an auxiliary to the cyanide process.

General Precious Metal Leaching Theory

Before going into the theory ….Read more

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