Economical mining methods

Economical mining methods

A McMaster University researcher develops a novel extraction method that saves time and money
February 28, 2013

Vale is the second largest mining company in the world with operations on all five continents, including two nickel mines in Thompson, Man., which employ more than 240 people. These mines are facing a shortage of high-grade nickel ore in the rock they extract, making the extraction process less cost effective. So Vale called upon Robert Pelton at McMaster University to come up with an economically feasible way to remove the nickel from the large quantities of lower-grade ore in the Thompson nickel belt.

Using a variety of equipment funded by the Canada Foundation for Innovation, Pelton developed a new extraction method which has proven effective. When commercialized, this technique will not only save Vale and other mining companies millions of dollars a year, but it will keep mines, like those in Thompson, open for business.