Dia Met Minerals' diamond recovery pilot plant in Colorado

CIM Bulletin, Vol. 85, No. 956, 1992

George W. Poling, Coordinator of Applied Research, Mining Association of British Columbia, and Professor, Mineral Process Engineering, The University of British Columbia, and Michael A. Waldman, Consulting Geologist, Littleton, Colorado

Dia Met Minerals has recently acquired a pilot plant for recovering diamonds larger than 0.5 mm from primary diamondiferous host rocks (kimberlite or lamproite) and secondary or alluvial diamondiferous materials. This is a highly specialized plant to produce small volumes of heavy mineral (including diamond) concentrates from large (1501 to 1000 t) samples derived from exploration programs. The plant can process up to 35 t to 75 t per working day and includes facilities for final diamond recovery and grade evaluation. It is located 41 km northwest of Fort Collins, Colorado, at Sloan Ranch. The pilot plant includes facilities for crushing, scrubbing and screening for liberation of diamonds. Heavy media separation, a jig, grease tables and an X-ray sorter plus hand sorting are used for diamond recovery. This paper describes the details of the plant, which is unique in North America.
Mots Clés: Mineral processing, Diamond mining, Dia Met Minerals, Pilot plants.