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Zinc and Lead Mining in Bolivia
Zinc and Lead Mining in Bolivia Overview
According to the US Geological Survey, Bolivia produced 430 000 metric tons of zinc in 2010, up from 422 000 in 2009. Bolivia produced 90 000 metric tons of lead in 2010, up from 86 000 in 2009.
The Escala mine (50% owned by Franklin Mining in joint profit participation with state-owned Comibol (20%) and local co-operative Inti Ltda (30%)) is located in the Sur Lipez province.
Japanese company Sumitomo owns the San Cristobal mine, located about 500 kilometres south of the Bolivian capital La Paz. The San Cristobal mine started production in August 2007. This open-pit mine is expected to have a 16-year mining life.
Glencore’s Sinchi Wayra operates 5 mines in the Oruro and Potosi regions of Bolivia. Sinchi Wayra has a production capacity of 205,000 MT zinc concentrate and 15,000 MT lead concentrate.
Apogee Silver is a Toronto based junior exploration and development company with a strategic focus on advanced stage silver, zinc, and lead deposits in South America. Apogee’s primary focus is the Pulacayo-Paca Property located in south-western Bolivia. Apogee has been advancing the property since 2006 through a joint venture agreement with Golden Minerals Company.
Lead and Zinc Ore Mining
Lead and zinc ore is nearly always mined below the surface of the ground. Some veins of ore lie as deep as several thousand feet but most deposit s lie close to the surface. Lead and zinc ore is mined almost exclusively in underground operations, though a few surface operations do exist. The use of underground or surface mining techniques depends on the proximity of the ore body to the surface and the individual characteristics of each ore body determine the exact mining method.
Mining is accomplished using several techniques th at involve creating a tunnel or drift along the vein. The ore is removed by drilling and blasting, and removed through the drift to the shaft. The ore is hoisted to the surface for further concen tration. In the mine, worker stry to sepa rate the ore-bearing minerals from the barren rock as much as possible during the m i ning process. In some mining districts, the lead or zinc is found in massive deposits and mined similar to coal using room and pillar methods.
Lead & Zinc Benefication Introduction
Lead and zinc ores are usually found together with gold and silver. A lead-zinc ore may also contain lead sulfide, zinc sulfide, iron sulfide, iron carbonate, and quartz. When zinc and lead sulfides are present in profitable amounts they are regarded as ore minerals. The remaining rock and minerals are called gangue.
Lead and zinc is kind of earlier metal extracted from lead and zinc ore. Lead and zinc is widely used in the electrical industry, mecbmical industry, military industry, metallurgy industry, chemical industry, light industry and pharmaceutical industry, etc. In addition, lead metal is also widely used in the nuclear industry, oil industry, etc. There are 11 kinds of plumbing minerals and 6 kinds of zinc minerals in lead and zinc ore in which galena and sphalerite are the most important.
Lead and Zinc Ore beneficiation Processing and equipment for sale
Lead and Zinc Ore Milling process
Treatment of lead and zinc ores begins with milling. Milling is a multi-stage crushing and grinding operation. It involves coarse crushing followed by wet grinding. Crushing is usually a dry operation that utilizes water sprays to control dust. Primary crushing is often performed at the mine site , followed by additional crushing at the mill. The crushed or e is mi xed with water and initial flotation reagents to form slurry.
The ore is then ground in rod and ball mills. The slurry may also be ground in autogenous mills (a mill where the ore acts as the grinding medium) or semi -autogenous mills (steel balls are added to the ore). Hydrocyclones are used between each grinding step to separa te coarse and fine particles.
The coarse particles are returned to the mill for further size reduction. Milling is carefully controlled to produce the required particle size. Grinding the ore too fine will produce slimes or very fine particles, which are difficult to recover in the separation process and are usually lost to tailing.