Reducing water in the mining process

It’s a relatively simple process for nature to combine two hydrogen atoms with one oxygen atom to create water. However, fresh water is becoming increasingly scarce due to over-use, climate change, and pollution. This is causing the mineral mining industry to rethink how it can still extract the precious materials they are searching for without adding to the problem.

Mining operations use water primarily for mineral processing, dust suppression and/or slurry transport. However, fresh water sources aren’t always readily available where mining operations are taking place, so in many cases it would need to be shipped in. However, in some cases, it’s actually the opposite that causes a problem—when water needs to be pumped away from a mine site, especially in underground mining operations. This can lead to reduced levels of groundwater, depleted surface water, and it can also potentially contaminate other fresh water sources if the mine water is “tainted” and seeps into area rivers and/or lakes.

Mining operations that use water to extract resources can also have problems with leftover waste water pools. If chemicals are added to the water or it otherwise becomes contaminated by mining operations, the mining organization must then build storage pools to contain the “used” water until it can be treated or it naturally becomes decontaminated. In the past, these pools have experienced dam breaks, pour thousands of gallons of toxic water into nearby lakes and rivers, creating an environmental disaster.

ST Equipment & Technology has a better solution. Our proprietary triboelectrostatic belt separator is a dry process that requires no fresh water source but can separate down to very small mineral particle sizes that were previously only achievable through wet separation processes, such as flotation, which requires a fresh water source. ST Equipment & Technology’s separator can process large quantities at a high rate using very little energy, making it efficient for mining operations while still being environmentally friendly. And it’s compact enough to set up on site so materials don’t need to be shipped to a processing center.

Save your water for drinking. We’ve created a better way for mining operations to get more from less without using up a valuable resource.