Biopolymer Addition to Boost Recovery and Throughput in Gold Leaching Processes. A Case Study from Antam Pongkor, Indonesia 


Submitter/Author: Dr. Rolf Andreas Lauten

Co-Authors: Helmington Sitanggang, Antam Pongkor; Adam Pratomo, Antam Pongkor; Dani Ramdani, Pionera



A universal challenge for the mineral processing industry is the diminishment of high grade ores. Instead, lowgrade ores, sometimes also containing problematic gangue minerals is the reality. With lower head grades the industry has to put more effort into processing to maintain the output and achieve suitable recoveries. In an effort to reduce the impact of declining headgrade, a biopolymer was evaluated as an additive in the gold leaching operation at Antam Pongkor in Indonesia. Laboratory testing revealed that biopolymer usage lead to an increased gold recovery without apparent negative impact on the other parts of the process. Further plant trials revealed both a recovery increase around 1.3% and higher throughput (9%) in the presence of biopolymer. Some scenarios that can explain these findings will be discussed.