The Alligator Ridge Mine is located 70 miles northwest of Sly in White Pine County, Nevada. Development of the mine began in the late 1970’s as a joint venture between Amselco Minerals, Inc. and Occidental Minerals Corporation, with Amselco as the operating partner. Early in 1983 Nerco Minerals Company acquired Occidental’s share of the property. The mine and ore processing facility have operated at capacity since 1981 producing 680,000 tonnes of ore and 1,900 kg of gold per year.
The gold ore deposits at Alligator Ridge consist of disseminated micron-size gold particles in a silicified siltstone matrix. The deposit comprises three separate but adjacent areas of mineralization that are designated as Vantage 1, Vantage 2, and Vantage 3 after the name of the basin in which the deposits lie.
Heap Leaching – Background
Given a material of suitable porosity to allow diffusion of the lixiviant into and out of ore particles, successful heap leaching depends on obtaining maximum exposure of ore particles to solution flowing through the heap. Two criteria must be satisfied to assure maximum exposure of ore to lixiviant: (1) heaps must be uniformly permeable to solution flow and (2) solution must be uniformly distributed over the surface of