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Bioleaching study for low grade primary sulfides at Collahuasi

C. Lorca
Collahuasi
Baquedano 902, Iquique, Chile
cxlorca@collahuasi.cl





ABSTRACT


Collahuasi performed a preliminary study to measure the response of low
grade primary ores of the Rosario deposit to bioleaching. The study
includes the chemical and mineralogical characterization of the ores, the
search for native bacteria and their isolation and ore adaptation, shaker
tests with mesophilic and thermophilic bacteria, preparation of different
cultures, and one meter height inoculated column tests with 1 size
samples at 60, 77 and 113 F.

Results indicate that Rosario ores contained mesophilic and moderate
thermophilic bacteria and all the ores under study showed to be compatible
and amenable for bioleaching. The highest extraction rate is reached at a
higher temperature and acid consumptions are moderate to high.













INTRODUCTION

Collahuasi began to study potential leachable resources in 2001 in order to
sustain or increase the production capacity of the Oxide Plant, programmed
to operate until 2008 with the original reserves.
The main potential resources are low grade primary sulfides that will be
generated from Rosario mine operation from 2004 until 2032. These
resources are estimated at 1.1 billion ton with an average grade of 0.36 %
CuT at a 0.2 %CuT cut off grade.

TESTWORK

Program planning and execution

The study was conducted at CIMM T&S laboratories in Antofagasta,
assisted by the Laboratorio de Tecnologa Minera from Universidad
Catolica del Norte - Antofagasta. The program test and protocols were
prepared with the support of Mr. Randolph Scheffel, international
consultant, and Mr. Francisco Arriagada, IDESOL consultant. The
mineralogical study was performed by MAM Ltd., and the sequential copper
analysis was performed by CIMM T&S La Serena.

Ore samples and characterization

Rosario sulfides were classified into 27 geological units (GU) using as
criteria rock type, alteration and mineralization. Rock types include
andesites, sediments, three different porphyries and rhyolite. Alteration
facies include potassic-propilitic, sericitic, biotitic or argilic. Mineralization is
mainly chalcopyrite followed by chalcosite and bornite. The GU
classification and estimated contributions are shown in Figure 1.
To conduct the test work, eight samples representing the main GU were
prepared from 4 drill cores. Those samples represent 82 % of the
resources. See Figure 2.

Sample preparation

To prepare the sample composites, each sample was crushed and
screened into four size fractions -1 + , - + , - + 10 # and 10
#. Each fraction was accurately sampled to be characterized and also
stored in separated drums.

CuT Ore
(%) (t) (t) (%)
rimario 0.35 321,119,042 1,134,348 27.50
rimario 0.36 175,479,495 625,332 15.16
mario 0.35 67,772,938 234,104 5.67
mario 0.44 48,914,626 212,818 5.16
rimario 0.39 4,102,620 16,147 0.39
mario 0.37 156,806,267 581,220 14.09
rio 0.40 44,035,027 174,448 4.23
rimario 0.40 19,644,383 79,024 1.92
rimario 0.36 31,201,915 111,013 2.69
mario 0.36 19,445,756 69,735 1.69
ndario Dbil 0.44 1,759,609 7,692 0.19
rimario 0.38 67,779,682 256,410 6.22
ndario Dbil 0.44 5,252,446 23,220 0.56
rimario 0.37 50,640,714 189,738 4.60
rio 0.29 75,204,893 221,100 5.36
dario Dbil 0.45 6,222,058 27,828 0.67
ario en Pirita 0.40 15,074,980 60,393 1.46
rio 0.39 2,963,760 11,418 0.28
ndario Dbil 0.46 1,102,440 5,126 0.12
dario 0.49 3,402,117 16,793 0.41
dario 0.47 2,271,208 10,768 0.26
ndario Dbil 0.46 2,129,460 9,758 0.24
ario en Pirita 0.41 5,876,113 24,251 0.59
dario en Pirita 0.36 3,960,660 14,187 0.34
dario 0.50 119,820 602 0.01
26 Cualquier Litologa Roca fresca, Alt. K, Propiltica, Hornfelds Secundario 0.45 1,645,492 7,400 0.18
27 Cualquier Litologa Alteracin Biottica Clortica Secundario en Pirita 0.30 214,080 651 0.02
Total 0.36 1,134,141,602 4,125,525 100.00
s. Estimated values.
Fines contribution
eralization
1 Andesita - Sedimento Roca fresca, Alt. K, Propiltica, Hornfelds P
2 Riolita Alteracin Serictica P
3 Prfido Collahuasi Alteracin Serictica Pri
4 Prfido Ins - Prfido Rosario Alteracin Serictica Pri
5 Prfido Ins - Prfido Rosario Alteracin Biottica Clortica P
6 Andesita - Sedimento Volcnico Alteracin Serictica Pri
7 Prfido Ins - Prfido Rosario Roca fresca, Alt. K, Propiltica Prima
8 Andesita - Sedimento Volcnico Alteracin Biottica y Biottica Clortica P
9 Prfido Collahuasi Alteracin Arglica P
10 Prfido Collahuasi Roca fresca, Alt. K, Propiltica Pri
11 Prfido Collahuasi Alteracin Serictica Secu
12 Andesita - Sedimento Volcnico Alteracin Arglica P
13 Cualquier Litologa Alteracin Serictica Secu
14 Cualquier Litologa Alteracin Arglica P
15 Riolita Roca fresca, Alt. K, Propiltica Prima
16 Cualquier Litologa Alteracin Arglica Secun
17 Cualquier Litologa Alteracin Serictica Secund
18 Cualquier Litologa Alteracin Biottica - Biottica Clortica Prima
19 Cualquier Litologa Alteracin Biottica - Biottica Clortica Secu
20 Cualquier Litologa Alteracin Serictica Secun
21 Cualquier Litologa Alteracin Arglica Secun
22 Cualquier Litologa Roca fresca, Alt. K, Propiltica, Hornfelds Secu
23 Cualquier Litologa Alteracin Arglica Secund
24 Cualquier Litologa Roca fresca, Alt. K, Propiltica, Hornfelds Secun
25 Cualquier Litologa Alteracin Biottica Clortica Secun
Figure 1. Geological Unit
Lithology Alteration Min UG
Geological Number of Total meters Average Total Unit
Unit drills included in grade sample contribution
the composite (% CuT) (Kg) (%)
1 5 98 0.40 218 27.5
2 2 10 0.51 22 15.2
3 6 181 0.46 342 5.7
4 23 675 0.48 1567 5.2
6 15 303 0.42 621 14.1
7 1 4 0.55 9 4.2
12 4 34 0.41 70 6.2
14 2 8 0.43 16 4.6
1,313 0.46 2863 82.6
Figure 2. Sample origin
Total



Chemical characterization

A sequential copper analysis was implemented, associating the sulphuric
acid soluble fraction with the easy soluble copper (oxides), the cyanide
soluble fraction with the moderately soluble copper (secondary sulphides)
and the refractory fraction with the insoluble copper (mainly chalcopyrite).
In addition, total sulphur and sulphate sulphur were analyzed to calculate
sulphide mineral distribution. Total iron and manganese were analyzed as
they represent the main impurities related with the leaching process. See
Figure 3.

Contrib
CuT FeT Mn S (T) S (Sulf.) S (SO4) CO3 CuSCit CuSS CuSCN CuR
UG
(%) (%) (%) (%) (%) (%) (%) (%) (%) (%) (%) (%)
1 0.410 3.980 0.160 1.430 1.430 < 0.001 1.200 0.016 0.020 0.054 0.337 27.50
2 0.480 3.150 0.046 0.820 0.820 < 0.001 0.110 0.02 0.023 0.135 0.322 15.16
3 0.510 1.970 0.005 1.940 1.940 < 0.001 0.100 0.012 0.017 0.089 0.405 5.67
4 0.545 2.290 0.039 1.750 1.750 < 0.001 0.220 0.013 0.015 0.047 0.484 5.16
6 0.450 5.070 0.150 2.410 2.410 < 0.001 0.490 0.02 0.026 0.079 0.345 14.09
7 0.520 1.550 0.029 0.870 0.870 < 0.001 0.140 0.011 0.012 0.020 0.488 4.23
12 0.425 8.080 1.360 1.950 1.950 < 0.001 6.550 0.015 0.016 0.037 0.372 6.22
14 0.380 6.900 0.660 3.520 3.520 < 0.001 2.140 0.028 0.031 0.044 0.305 4.60
Average 0.450 4.117 0.231 1.667 1.667 0.000 1.143 0.017 0.021 0.071 0.358 82.63
CuSS = Soluble Cu in sulphuric acid CuSCN = soluble copper in Sodium cyanide CuR = Refractory copper
Figure 3. Chemical analysis
UG



Mineralogical characterization

Mineralogical characterization was performed with optical microscope and
supported with X-ray diffraction, to identify copper and gangue species.
See Figure 4.
GU 1 GU 2 GU 3 GU 4 GU 6 GU 7 GU 12 GU 14
(%) (%) (%) (%) (%) (%) (%) (%)
Calcopirita CuFeS2 0.97 1.11 1.26 1.48 0.99 1.46 1.03 0.96
Calcosina Cu2S 0.06 0.06 0.03 0.02 0.09 0.01 0.02 0.02
Covelina CuS 0.01 0.05 0.00 0.01 0.02 0.00 0.00 0.00
Copper Bornita Cu5FeS4 0.00 0.00 0.04 0.01 0.01 0.00 0.07 0.01
ores Enargita Cu3AsS4 0.00 0.00 0.01 0.00 0.00 0.00 0.00 0.00
Atacamita Cu2Cl(OH)3 0.00 0.00 0.02 0.00 0.00 0.02 0.00 0.00
Brochantita Cu4SO4(OH)6 0.00 0.02 0.00 0.00 0.00 0.00 0.00 0.00
Crisocola CuSiO3-2H2O 0.03 0.01 0.01 0.00 0.03 0.00 0.02 0.02
Pseudomalaquita Cu2SO4(OH)6 0.02 0.02 0.02 0.04 0.02 0.00 0.00 0.04
Pirita FeS2 1.99 0.68 2.75 2.23 3.80 0.66 2.91 5.90
Molibdenita MoS2 0.04 0.06 0.02 0.07 0.01 0.02 0.00 0.03
Magnetita Fe3O4 0.28 0.21 0.03 0.03 0.15 0.02 0.05 0.03
Hematita Fe2O3 0.08 0.04 0.21 0.10 0.01 0.16 0.00 0.00
Limonita FeOOH 0.20 0.04 0.00 0.00 0.03 0.00 0.00 0.00
Rutilo TiO2 0.03 0.11 0.07 0.30 0.07 0.22 0.06 0.00
Subtotal 3.71 2.41 4.47 4.29 5.23 2.57 4.16 7.01
Calcita 5.07 2.63 1.29 1.24 2.59 0.00 2.09 2.39
Clorita 2.40 2.49 0.12 0.06 2.09 0.50 5.44 3.51
Biotita 2.76 1.36 0.01 0.07 2.41 0.68 5.61 3.70
Illita 4.87 3.80 2.48 3.59 3.74 7.60 3.01 4.60
Sericita 19.01 10.52 15.51 18.65 15.55 15.81 12.52 11.94
Gangue Caolinita 6.82 9.43 6.95 4.46 4.65 11.81 5.61 6.42
Montmorillonita 4.46 3.47 4.55 5.47 4.56 5.79 2.75 3.68
Anfibola 5.60 2.90 2.85 1.37 1.43 2.90 0.00 3.95
Apatito 0.10 0.15 0.00 0.13 0.14 0.15 0.12 0.26
Hidrobiotita 1.31 1.36 0.13 1.89 0.67 0.68 1.08 1.24
Granate 0.00 0.00 0.00 0.00 0.97 0.00 4.66 1.78
Cuarzo 17.70 24.49 30.09 28.94 30.15 24.53 24.28 22.22
Epidota 1.48 4.63 0.02 0.14 1.52 0.08 1.23 1.40
Titanita 0.00 0.00 0.00 0.77 0.00 0.00 1.28 1.46
Jarosita 0.00 0.00 0.00 0.00 0.00 0.00 0.00 0.00
Plagioclasa 17.70 24.49 24.06 23.15 18.09 18.40 24.28 22.22
Piroxeno 0.00 0.00 0.00 0.00 1.52 0.13 0.00 0.00
Pirofilita 2.49 0.00 2.53 2.43 0.00 0.00 0.00 0.00
Feld. Potsico 4.55 5.90 4.64 3.34 4.65 8.26 1.87 2.14
Turmalina 0.00 0.00 0.28 0.00 0.00 0.00 0.00 0.00
Yeso 0.00 0.00 0.01 0.00 0.05 0.11 0.04 0.09
Subtotal 96.30 97.59 95.52 95.70 94.76 97.43 95.85 92.99
Total 100.01 100.00 99.99 99.99 99.99 100.00 100.01 100.00
Figure 4. Mineralogical characterization



A comparison exercise was done between the sequential chemical assay
and the mineralogical study, related with chalcopyrite content. See Figures
5 and 6.






Average
GU 1 GU 2 GU 3 GU 4 GU 6 GU 7 GU 12 GU 14 contribution
Calcopirita 82.24 78.82 85.09 92.11 75.84 96.27 84.14 88.41 82.54
Calcosina 11.73 9.83 4.67 2.87 15.90 1.52 3.77 4.25 9.52
Covelina 1.63 6.81 0.00 1.19 2.94 0.00 0.00 0.00 2.37
Bornita 0.00 0.00 4.94 1.14 1.40 0.00 10.46 1.68 1.53
Enargita 0.00 0.00 0.94 0.00 0.00 0.00 0.00 0.00 0.06
Atacamita 0.00 0.00 2.22 0.00 0.00 2.21 0.00 0.00 0.27
Brochantita 0.00 2.25 0.00 0.00 0.00 0.00 0.00 0.00 0.41
Crisocola 2.56 0.72 0.67 0.00 2.28 0.00 1.64 1.79 1.64
Pseudomalaquita 1.84 1.57 1.46 2.69 1.64 0.00 0.00 3.87 1.66
GU contribution 27.50 15.16 5.67 5.16 14.09 4.23 6.22 4.60 100.00
Figure 5. Fine copper contribution according mineralogy (%)




Mineralogical characterization
Chemical characterization
GU
Average 14 7 12 6 4 3 2 1
10
20
30
40
50
60
70
80
90
100
0
Figure 6. Fine copper contained in chalcopyrite (%)

















Preliminary studies

Bottle roll tests

This test measures copper extraction and sulphuric acid consumption using
1 Kg of sample at size 10 # Tyler under constant acidity. Three pH
levels were used 1.0, 1.5 and 2.0. Sampling, pH control and acid addition
was made at 1, 2, 4, 8, 24, 48, 72 and 96 hours. Figure 7 shows a
summary from 45 tests.
CuT extraction
(Kg/t) (Kg/Kg Cu) (%)
1.0 59.0 110.6 13.0
1 1.5 52.8 106.6 12.3
2.0 26.5 85.9 8.1
1.0 32.3 44.0 16.2
2 1.5 18.2 27.6 13.8
2.0 12.0 32.0 9.3
1.0 17.7 25.4 14.0
3 1.5 11.4 18.1 12.4
2.0 6.2 13.9 9.5
1.0 28.7 53.1 10.2
4 1.5 14.6 29.0 9.8
2.0 8.5 20.1 8.3
1.0 49.8 56.7 20.3
6 1.5 33.2 40.3 18.6
2.0 17.2 33.2 12.3
1.0 24.8 91.5 5.5
7 1.5 15.7 59.9 5.1
2.0 12.2 48.9 5.0
1.0 104.7 221.7 11.3
12 1.5 62.2 158.2 9.2
2.0 34.0 127.9 6.3
1.0 50.3 83.4 16.0
14 1.5 20.7 37.3 14.8
2.0 26.6 72.0 9.6
GU pH
Net acid consumption
Figure 7. Bottle roll tests summary



Bioleaching laboratory studies

Liquid and solids samples were taken at the mine site in sterile flasks, a
total of 56 bacterial growth tests were done at 25 C and 45 C during 6
days in a media culture for ferroxidans microorganisms.
The strongest five populations were selected to conduct a second test to
adapt them to a mineral media. A composite prepared with GU 1, 3, 4, 6
and 12 was used in this stage. The best cultures, mesophilic and moderate
thermophilic, were selected to prepare inocules for column campaigns. The
mesophilic culture presented thiobacillus ferroxidans, leptospirillum
ferroxidans and sulfobacillus. Moderate thermophilic culture presented
mainly leptospirillum.
A third bioleaching flask campaign was run using both the mesophilic and
the thermophilic cultures and individual UG samples 1, 3, 4, 6 and 12. See
figures 8 and 9.
Max. Population Max. Population
(%) dia pH Eh (mV) (mo/ml) (%) dia pH Eh (mV) (mo/ml)
UMET 1 38.1 26 2.9 592 8.42E+09 UMET 1 72.0 43 1.7 629 6.40E+09
UMET 3 43.5 26 2.2 656 6.20E+09 UMET 3 55.0 43 1.5 657 4.56E+09
UMET 4 33.8 26 2.3 643 4.90E+09 UMET 4 61.1 43 1.5 643 4.92E+09
UMET 6 60.0 26 2.6 605 5.15E+09 UMET 6 72.5 43 1.7 625 5.50E+09
UMET 12 37.7 8 3.4 560 8.50E+09 UMET 12 44.0 43 2.1 596 6.10E+09
Mesophilic bioleaching (25 C) Thermophilic bioleaching (45 C)
CuT extraction CuT extraction
Ore Ore
Fig. 8 Extraction with mesophilic culture
0
10
20
30
40
50
60
70
80
90
100
1 8 19 26
Dias de cultivo
E
x
t
r
a
c
c
i

n

(
%

C
u
T
)
UMET 1 UMET 3 UMET 4 UMET 6 UMET 12
Fig. 9 Extraction with thermophilic culture
0
10
20
30
40
50
60
70
80
90
100
1 8 14 22 27 35 43
Dias de cultivo
E
x
t
r
a
c
c
i

n

(
%

C
u
T
)
UMET 1 UMET 3 UMET 4 UMET 6 UMET 12



Bioleaching in columns

The tests were performed in 6 diameter 1 meter height columns with about
30 Kg of sample prepared with a defined size distribution. To keep careful
temperature control, three isolated small rooms were kept at constant
temperature. Irrigation was intermittent applying solution at a rate of 10
l/h/m
2
, with one day rinse and a two or three days rest period, previous to
the inoculation an acid preconditioning was applied. Total operation time
was 217 days. Tests at 15 C and 25 C were inoculated with mesophilic
cultures and tests at 45 C were inoculated with moderate thermophilic
cultures.
All the irrigation solution was prepared diluting the industrial plant raffinate
to 8 gpl acid, 0.3 gpl Cu and 2 gpl total iron.
The drainage was sampled and composited in a sequence that covers
increasing periods of time. Both On and Off samples were analyzed for Cu,
FeT, Fe
+2
, Mn, Mg, Ca, Na, K, SiO
2
, As, total sulphur and sulphates.
Additionally, pH, redox potential and bacterial counting were
instantaneously measured. Copper extraction, acid consumption, bacterial
behavior and impurities behavior were measured. Summary results are
shown in Figure 9, 10 and 11.


Column Ore Temp. Irrig /rest
(C) CuT CuS(S+CN) CuR
1B GU 1 15 1/3 22.89 57.39 13.47
2B 45 1/2 40.43 68.47 35.29
3B 45 1/3 42.59 66.03 42.47
4B 45 1/3 42.20 70.30 38.38
5B GU 3 15 1/3 17.59 34.71 7.22
6B 45 1/3 35.34 52.78 23.38
7B GU 4 15 1/3 12.21 42.25 4.58
8B 45 1/3 29.82 59.02 21.21
9B GU 6 15 1/3 26.06 62.68 11.48
10B 15 1/3 27.65 64.56 16.65
11B 25 1/2 30.25 63.08 9.95
12B 25 1/3 29.04 66.37 15.68
13B 25 1/3 28.64 62.26 16.94
14B 45 1/2 46.59 67.88 35.04
Extraction (%)
Figure 9. Columns
(Kg/t) (Kg/Kg Cu max. min. Start End
35.60 35.57 1.00E+08 1.90E+06 92.33 61.92
62.18 36.43 1.70E+08 1.40E+07 92.33 51.68
52.44 30.99 3.10E+08 1.90E+07 92.33 52.89
53.69 31.39 1.30E+08 1.40E+07 92.33 52.26
3.08 3.75 3.10E+07 2.40E+06 92.30 88.71
8.14 4.76 1.40E+07 4.50E+06 92.30 84.61
8.64 13.91 2.60E+07 2.50E+06 92.30 87.75
15.92 10.28 2.80E+07 7.90E+06 92.30 85.14
24.20 20.79 4.70E+07 6.90E+06 92.30 76.66
24.10 20.28 6.30E+07 2.80E+06 92.30 76.92
33.29 22.76 4.60E+07 4.90E+06 92.30 75.20
30.77 24.01 8.60E+07 6.40E+06 92.30 75.48
27.98 22.23 4.50E+07 3.90E+06 92.30 75.87
54.59 25.30 5.30E+07 2.10E+06 92.30 67.11
15B 45 1/3 43.68 69.58 35.63 42.28 22.37 5.10E+07 1.90E+06 92.30 65.98
16B 45 1/2 47.74 72.43 38.00 55.87 26.34 1.20E+07 1.50E+05 92.30 69.25
Net acid consumption Bact. population (mo/ml)
tests results
Size fraction + 1/4"

GU 3 GU 4
Col 15 Col 14 Col 16 Col 2 Col 3 Col 4 Col 6 Col 8
(X
G
) Ln(X
G
) (%) (%) (%) (%) (%) (%) (%) (%)
-1 1/2" + 3/4" 3.29 33.17 26.15 32.20 20.58 35.59 28.57 20.23 19.30
-3/4" + 1/4" 2.40 45.11 46.00 52.89 44.96 49.88 48.24 44.00 33.33
-1/4" + 10 # 1.19 67.27 65.45 67.27 63.46 65.38 65.38 52.08 47.27
- 10 # 69.42 72.02 69.42 70.23 70.69 69.54 35.94 38.47
GU 6 GU
Figure 10. Copper extraction at 45 C
Rec. CuT (%) = -18.534Ln(Xg)+ 88.38
R
2
= 0.9917
0
10
20
30
40
50
60
70
80
0.0 0.5 1.0 1.5 2.0 2.5 3.0 3.5 4.0
Ln (X
G
) (mm)
R
e
c
.

(
%

C
u
T
)
Col 14 Col 15 Col 16
Col 2 Col 3 Col 4
Col 6 Col 8 Linear (Col 14)



Fig. 11. Extraction vs % Refractory copper
0
10
20
30
40
50
60
70
80
70 75 80 85 90 95 100
%Cu R
E
x
t
r
a
c
t
i
o
n

C
u
T

(
%
)
Bottle - pH 1.5 flask with mesophilic culture
flask with thermophilic culture Bottle - pH 1.0
Columns with mesophilic culture Columns with thermophilic culture

CONCLUSIONS

1 Ore characterization shows that there is a good correlation between
the refractory copper fraction estimated from the copper sequential
analysis and the chalcopyrite content from the mineralogical study.

2 From the bottle roll tests, the highest recovery obtained by GU 6 is
related with the lowest chalcopyrite content. The lowest recovery
obtained by GU 7 is related with the highest chalcopyrite content too.
The highest acid consumptions registered by GU 1 and 12 is
associated with the rock type, andesite or volcanic sediment, with a
potassic-propilitic or argilic alteration. The lowest acid consumers are
GU 2, 3, 4 and 6, whose lithology is porphyry or rhyolite with sericitic
alteration.

3 The bioleaching laboratory flask studies, suggest the ore samples
from the mine site were able to generate native bacterial populations.
For the mesophiles tests (25 C) final extractions were 34 to 60 % in
26 days and for moderate thermophiles tests (45 C) were 44 to 72 %
in 43 days. GU 6 reached the highest Cu extraction both in the
bioleach flask test and the chemical leach test in bottles due to his
higher solubility ratio.

4 The columns tests suggest that the temperature and particle size
(Figures 10 and 11) are the variables with highest impact on copper
recovery. Soluble fractions and refractory fractions showed growing
extraction with temperature and smaller particle sizes. More
competent rock, porphyries, are less amenable to leaching and show
the lowest recoveries. The intermittent irrigation seems to have no
influence, or is within the experimental error.
Chalcopyrite extraction, related to the refractory fraction, was clearly
enhanced with temperature as can see in Figure 11. Flask tests
reached better results due to their finer particle sizes. As an average,
copper columns extractions at 45 C were 20 extraction units higher
than extractions at 15 C.
The acid consumption showed two different behaviors : the first
increased with time and is related with rock type Andesite volcanic
sediment; the second one, related with the porphyric rock and highest
pyrite content, changed from an acid consumer to an acid generator.




Acknowledgements

My gratitude to Mr. Ricardo Palma, Collahuasi Development VP, for giving
me the opportunity to prepare this paper, and to all who contributed to the
development of the metallurgical testwork program.