CRC- P Research Grant for Kapunda In-Situ Gold and Copper Recovery Trial

Environmental Copper Recovery received a Cooperative Research Centres (CRC) Program Grant from the Dept of Industry, Innovation and Science in July 2018, for the Kapunda Copper InSitu Recovery project. The Commonwealth Government has committed $2.85 million over 3 years (to June 2021) for this project.

The CRC Program supports industry-led collaborations between industry, researchers and the community.

The research is in conjunction with University of Adelaide’s Institute for Mineral and Energy Resources and CSIRO’s Minerals and Land & Water Divisions.

The key objective is to research the core values of environmental, social and economic impacts of In-Situ Recovery mining.

In-Situ Recovery is a proven method of metal recovery that has been used for over 50 years, but recent technological improvements in the ISR process and the use of environmentally benign lixiviants (leaching agents) are broadening the potential application of this method to the recovery of other metals, like gold and copper, from mineral deposits that can not be mined by conventional methods (open cut and underground).

All this research will link into environmental impacts, including the water table.  

Advanced geophysics and 3D computer modelling by University of Adelaide will enable the researchers to measure lixiviant and water flows within the existing fractured rock (natural and past mining).

CSIRO Land & Water undertaking baseline environmental studies then utilising these measurements to apply them to formulating risk management strategies via an Environmental Report Card - a first for the mining industry.

CSIRO Land & Water have undertaken social studies of what are the core values of a mining heritage community and how these values relate to the application of modern mining techniques. Completed - See published paper

CSIRO Minerals with Mining3 are analysing for the best environmentally friendly solution that will extract economical amounts of copper without affecting the water table.

Research progress updates

View our Cloud Tour of what a test site for the project will look like.

Navigate as a touch screen or with your mouse. We have included points of interest with old mine photos and Kapunda.

View our CRC-P Research Grant PDF


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