Barrick Gold’s PAX System
Barrick Gold Corporation is a mining company headquartered in Toronto, Ontario, that operates sixteen gold and copper mines in thirteen different countries around the world. Their Pueblo Viejo mine in the Dominican Republic is the largest gold mine in the Americas and the third largest in the world.
Barrick Gold came to us with a problem. They needed a new PAX System designed and installed at the Pueblo Viejo mine. We understood that Potassium Amyl Xanthate (PAX) was an extremely toxic chemical used in mining to separate ores.
For Mainland, the biggest challenges on this project were:
Barrick Gold not only wanted an updated mixing system, but one that would be easier to monitor and maintain in the future.
To address these challenges and concerns, Mainland designed a large-capacity ZChemGear™ mixing and dosing system, which included the following components:
The system features a 2400-gallon (9.1 m3) tank with live xanthate mixing capability for 10-30% solution concentrations. Solutions are transferred to a day tank of 3000 gallons (11.4 m3), from which feed pumps deliver solution to the process. In addition, the supporting structure included a monorail, hoist, stairs, and platforms.
After the system was manufactured at Mainland’s facility in Abbotsford, BC, all dismantled sub-assemblies were fitted into standard 40’ containers and delivered to the Dominican Republic.
Mainland sent a qualified Mechanical Engineer to the mine to oversee the installation of the system, to provide technical supervision, and to conduct the necessary inspections.
Due to potential hazards of the PAX System, special attention was paid to the following design elements:
In the end, Barrick Gold was very happy with the new system, and Mainland Machinery was very pleased to provide another rigorously designed product that was built not only to meet code requirements but to maximize health and safety conditions.
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