Current developments at Rio Algom, Elliot Lake

CIM Bulletin, Vol. 72, No. 804, 1979

K. D. HESTER, Chief Uranium Engineer, Rio Algom Limited, Toronto, Ontario

This paper will review the metallurgical aspects of the completed expansion program at Quirke, and the current rehabilitation and refurbishing program at Panel.During the Quirke program, completed at the end of 1977, the plant capacity was increased from a nominal 4,500 to 7,000 short tons per milling day. The expansion of crushing, grinding, neutral thickening and filtering, leaching, partial neutralization, sand-slime separation, sand washing, C.C.D., clarification, ion exchange, mine water treatment, and tailings neutralization and pumping will be considered. The application of Enviro-Clear thickeners in the mine water treatment circuit and in the C.C.D. will be briefly reviewed. An automatic grinding and classification circuit for limestone will also be covered. The refurbishing program underway at Panel will be discussed. The Quirke and Panel plants will be contrasted and compared. In particular, reference will be made to environmental considerations. The innovative system for producing yellow cake at Panel, LAM1X, will be considered as well as the proposed treatment system for Panel tailings.
Keywords: Hydrometallurgy, Uranium metallurgy, Rio Algom Ltd., Quirke Mine, Panel Mine, Crushing, Grinding, Thickening, Filtering, Leaching, Cyclones, Countercurrent decant at ion, Ion exchange, Precipitation, Water treatment, Tailings neutralization, Clarification, LAMIX process.