Effective gold recovery from near-surface oxide zone using reductive microwave roasting and magnetic separation

Bong Ju Kim, Kang Hee Cho, Sang Gil Lee, Cheon Young Park, Nag Choul Choi, Soonjae Lee

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

6 Citations (Scopus)


High content of gold in near-surface oxide zones above the gold ore deposit could be recovered using cyanidation. However, restricting the use of cyanide in mines has made it difficult to recover gold within the oxide zone. In this study, we investigated an application of the reductive microwave roasting and magnetic separation (RMR-MS) process for the effective gold recovery from ores in a near-surface oxide zone. Ore samples obtained from the near-surface oxide zone in Moisan Gold Mine (Haenam, South Korea) were used in RMR-MS tests for the recovery of iron and gold. The effect of the RMR process on the recovery of iron and gold was evaluated by given various conditions of the microwave irradiation as well as the dosages of reductant and additive. The microwave roasting resulted in a chemical reduction of non-magnetic iron oxide minerals (hematite) to magnetite minerals, such as magnetite and maghemite. This mineral phase change could induce the effective separation of iron minerals from the gangue minerals by magnetic separation process. The increased iron recovery was directly proportional to the gold recovery due to the coexistence of gold with iron minerals. The RMR-MS process could be a promising method for gold recovery from the ores in near-surface oxide zones.

Original languageEnglish
Article number957
Issue number11
Publication statusPublished - 2018

Bibliographical note

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  • Fe-oxide
  • Gold recovery
  • Magnetic separation
  • Mineral phase change
  • Oxide zone
  • Reductive microwave roasting

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Materials Science(all)
  • Metals and Alloys


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