This is the first course in the six-course Cyanide Management in Mining series. This course assumes knowledge of environmental engineering or mineral processing.
The chemistry of cyanide solutions is unique with its ability to dissolve gold and silver. Cyanide is highly selective with respect to combining with gold and silver; in solution it forms complexes with other metals, such as mercury, zinc, copper, iron, and nickel. The formation of these other metal complexes partially account for the consumption of cyanide in gold extraction circuits and generate solutions that can be difficult to treat and analyze.
Although chemical replacements for cyanide have been investigated for decades, it remains the exclusive extraction reagent or lixiviant of choice for over 90% of the gold recovered. This is due to a combination of availability, effectiveness, economics, and an ability to use and manage cyanide with acceptable risk to humans and the environment.
Cyanide Management in Mining Series
The Cyanide Management in Mining course series provides the learner with the necessary background for developing a cyanide management plan that meets the unique requirements of each operating mine. Due to environmental risks, a cyanide management plan is of critical importance to a mining operation. The lack of such a plan, in some cases, has contributed to adverse environmental incidents involving cyanide.
The series consists of the following courses.
- Chemistry of Free and Complexed Cyanide
- Analysis of Cyanides
- Geochemical Properties and Environmental Fate of Cyanide
- Toxicity and Environmental Properties of Cyanide
- Water Management and Discharge Strategies
- Treatment Technologies for Cyanide and Related Compounds
This course consists of 5 viewing sessions of 30–45 minutes each with supporting figures, references, and multiple choice course reviews. Course duration is equivalent to approximately 3 hours of viewing content.