The modular Python processing plant – designed for underground preconcentration
Minerals & Metallurgical Processing
, 2010, Vol. 27, No. 2, pp. 89-96
Hughes, T.R.; Gray, A.H.
How do you fit a processing plant underground with minimal change to mine infrastructure and yet maintain economic recovery, operability and maintainability? By combining fine crushing, continuous-gravity recovery and flotation. A modular, transportable processing plant has been designed that is capable of being installed in underground drives/drifts or on the surface. The Python processing plants have been designed to treat 20 or 50 tons per hour of ore to a particle size of approximately 500 µm and recover gold and sulfides into the concentrate. The plant is only three meters wide (including bolt-on platforms) and can be installed on a 1:50 slope, making for very simple installation. Test work carried out by Gekko Systems Pty. Ltd. has indicated that up to 50% of ores tested to date would achieve gold recovery rates of over 90% using this method. The projected benefits of this strategy are numerous and include low overall capital and operating cost, significantly less power consumption compared with traditional milling circuits and low environmental footprint.