Many metals exploring companies invest millions of dollars in copper mines as copper is in high demand due to its multiple uses and benefits. But the mining process is not as easy as it sounds. You need to access proper learning and training to carry out copper mining steps precisely.
Copper exploration is a complex process that requires professional training and designing programs. Many companies provide sustainable copper exploring and mining services. For instance, Vancouver-based companies like Solaris Resources have to explore programs designed by the world’s greatest explorer. They are producing copper and gold deposits in Latin America with some practical tactics. This is the reason why Solaris Resources stock price has been showing a rising tendency.
Fundamental Steps Of Copper Mining
Let’s discuss some important steps of copper mining that are important to consider if you are planning to explore this vital metal. Be aware of the terms like open-pit or underground mining and strictly follow safety guidelines
Step 1: Prospecting and Staking
It is a basic step to discover where the minerals and metals are located in abundance to conduct copper mining. You can explore either by finding rock formations on the surface and using geological data. If prospectors find enough copper deposits, they are likely to develop a mine. It is important to note that ownership rights or license policies differ from one land to another, and one should consider them before setting up.
Step 2: Exploration
Once the claim has been assured, start the exploration process. This process ensures whether the copper ore is worth developing a mine. Preliminary exploration activity includes:
- Ground Surveys
- Airborne surveys
- Removal of vegetation and soil
- Removing bulk ores from the surface
- Drilling activities to remove rock samples deep in the rock
- Construction of underground access tunnels
Step 3: Mine Operation (Mining and Milling)
During copper mine development, the mining and milling phase includes ore extraction, crushing or grinding of ore, the chemical concentration of ore, storage of waste rock, and tailings. In ore extraction of milling, poisonous substances are used to separate copper from the ore.
Below are the stages of mining and extracting pure copper from the ore:
- Extraction of ores from rock.
- Grinding of ores into crushed powder.
- Concentrating in which unwanted material is left at the bottom and removed (froth flotation).
- Roasting or heating enriched copper ores.
- Smelting with fluxes to get 60% pure copper.
- Converting it into blister copper by blowing air.
- Blister undergoes anode casting for refining
- Lastly, Electrolytic refining is done to get 99.99% copper
Step 4: Mine Closure and Site Rehabilitation
It is an important mining stage since all mining productions are temporary and will end at some point. So, the Ministry has made it necessary for mining companies to provide mine closure plans. It is because many mines remained abandoned without proper reclamation.
To sum up, we need first to learn how exploration is done and what things you should keep in mind before mining copper, such as prospecting and staking. Then, start the exploration process if the copper ores are worth developing a mine. You can generate 99.99% of pure copper from the ore rocks containing 1% copper by extraction processes.