Mining

Mining

ARE YOU MONITORING AN ACTIVE MINE SITE OR INVOLVED IN A CLOSURE?

From exploration through to processing and closure or reclamation, accurate, timely and ultra-low level analytical analyses are essential to mine operations. Our clients rely on Bureau Veritas to help them meet regulatory requirements, such as the MDMER, and manage costs. We have been providing testing and scientific expertise in acid rock drainage, radioactivity and trace element analysis, ecotoxicology, and environmental chemistry for more than 35 years.

  • ACID ROCK DRAINAGE

    LABORATORY ACID ROCK DRAINAGE (ARD) PREDICTION TESTS ARE USED TO DETERMINE THE MOST APPROPRIATE DISPOSAL OPTIONS FOR WASTE ROCK AND TAILINGS IN ORDER TO MINIMIZE ENVIRONMENTAL IMPACT

    Bureau Veritas offers the full range of ARD testing services for prediction studies and routinely conducts geochemical analysis, static testing and kinetic test programs. To better approximate site conditions, larger scale tests under specific environmental conditions can be conducted. To simulate underwater disposal of water materials, custom subaqueous disposal (SAD) tests can be conducted to predict pore water quality, seepage quality to groundwater, and surface water quality.

    All test methods are offered including MEND, EPA, ASTM, and NAG methods. Custom tests include a variety of sequential leach tests. Our extensive laboratory facilities enable customized experimental design and testing over a wide range of simulated environmental conditions.

    GEOCHEMICAL CHARACTERIZATION

    Bureau Veritas offers a complete suite of geochemical analyses for characterization of overburden, wasterock and tailing materials by a variety of techniques. Common analyses for acid rock drainage (ARD) prediction include sulfur speciation, carbon speciation, trace metals using various digestions and whole rock analysis. We also have the capability to tailor sulfur speciation procedures to specific ore bodies and mining projects.

    MINERALOGICAL ANALYSIS

    Bureau Veritas offers mineralogical analysis relating to acid rock drainage (ARD) using optical microscopy on polished thin sections, X-ray diffraction (XRD) and scanning electron microscope (SEM) methods.

    Identification of minerals present, grain size, grain boundaries and relative abundance can be determined. The Rietveld XRD Method is also offered, allowing quantitative analysis of certain minerals at low detection limits. QEMScan bulk mineral analysis, which incorporates SEM and other methods, is also now offered.

    STATIC TESTING

    ACID BASE ACCOUNTING (ABA)

    Bureau Veritas offers all acid base accounting (ABA) procedures including standard Sobek, modified Sobek, Net Acid Generation (NAG), and siderite corrected NP. Analyses commonly include paste pH, fizz rating, total sulfur, sulfate sulfur, sulfide sulfur and neutralisation potential (NP). We also calculate and provide maximum potential acidity (MPA), carbonate NP (NNP), net NP and NP ratio (NPR).

    STATIC WATER LEACHING PROCEDURES

    Short-term water extraction (18 to 24h) procedures are routinely conducted to determine the presence of readily leachable contaminants. Methods we offer include the MEND SFE, SPLP, TCLP and Meteoric Water Mobility Procedure (MWMP). Extract analysis commonly includes pH, EC and dissolved metals by ICP-ES or ICP-MS. Other possible analytes include ORP, alkalinity, acidity, sulfate, TDS, Cl, F, Br, nitrate-N, nitrite-N, ammonia-N, TKN, total P, ortho-phosphate, CN species and other anions.

    KINETIC TESTING

    HUMIDITY CELL TESTS — MEND AND ASTM D5744 METHODS

    These tests are used to evaluate the long-term weathering characteristics of mine waste materials disposed under subaerial conditions. Tests are run in strict adherence to standard procedures. Possible analyses of leachates include: pH, EC, ORP, electrical conductivity, TDS, hardness, sulfate, anions (nitrate, nitrite, chloride, fluoride, phosphate, ortho-phosphate, TKN, ammonia), alkalinity, acidity, Hg by CVAF, and dissolved metal scans by ICP-ES or ICP-MS. While similar to humidity cell testing in some ways, these tests simulate site waste disposal conditions (such as saturated, non-saturated or partially saturated) more closely and at larger scale than humidity cells.

    LEACH COLUMNS (LYSIMETERS) 

    While similar to humidity cell testing in some ways, these tests simulate site waste disposal conditions (such as saturated, non-saturated or partially saturated) more closely. Water is typically added in a trickle leach fashion, but periodic flushings are possible to better simulate field conditions. Analyses that can be conducted on leachate water are the same as those for humidity cell tests.

    SUBAQUEOUS DISPOSAL COLUMNS

    These tests simulate underwater disposal of tails or wasterock and the impacts of such disposal on the water system. Clear cast acrylic type column material is used. These tests often incorporate a series of ports, which enable sampling of surface water and pore water within the waste material. These tests can be operated under anoxic conditions using nitrogen or argon to displace oxygen. A custom in-line sampling port can be installed for in-situ analysis of selected parameters such as pH, Eh, ORP and dissolved oxygen. Analyses conducted on the water samples are the same as those for leach column tests, with the addition of dissolved oxygen analysis.

    OTHER NON-STANDARD TESTS

    Bureau Veritas has the ability to construct and operate customized test systems for the purpose of ARD and/or metal leaching prediction. This allows for investigation of scaled-up tests or custom environmental conditions to simulate field conditions. Larger scale versions of the humidity cell and static water leach tests, as well as barrel tests, are offered. These provide a larger volume of leach water, which may be required for atypical water analyses such as radionuclides investigation, confirmation of novel controls, or prevention measures. Also, customized sequential leach tests are offered.

  • ECOTOXICOLOGY

    ECOTOXICOLOGY IS THE STUDY OF THE EFFECTS OF TOXIC CHEMICALS ON BIOLOGICAL ORGANISMS

    Ecotoxicology is essential for evaluating the effects of industrial processes on the environment. Bureau Veritas operates three dedicated ecotoxicology laboratories in Canada. Our team of experts has experience conducting toxicity testing using more than 25 different species of bacteria, algae, plants, invertebrates and fish. Our goal is to be your first choice for both routine and customized toxicity testing programs for evaluation of effluents, sediment, soil, and chemical substances.

    Our team of ecotoxicologists provides services ranging from permit bioassay to compliance with MDMER to projects requiring customized experimental design and interpretive toxicology reporting.

    LEARN MORE

  • ENVIRONMENTAL CHEMISTRY

    BUREAU VERITAS PROVIDES COMPREHENSIVE ENVIRONMENTAL TESTING TO SUPPORT THE MINING LIFECYCLE FROM EXPLORATION TO CLOSURE AND RECLAMATION

    Bureau Veritas provides analytical support for routine and baseline water quality monitoring work, and determining levels of metals, inorganic and organic contamination in animal and plant tissue, soil and surface and groundwater samples. Environmental chemistry services include:

    • Deleterious substances
    • Effluent analysis as per the Metal and Diamond Mining Effluent Regulations (MDMER)
    • Routine water quality monitoring including permit stations, wastewater treatment plant (effluent/influent), tailings pond characterization, and monitoring wells
    • Soil and water analysis in support of baseline monitoring projects
    • Ultratrace metals analysis
    • Specialized studies in mercury and selenium, in water and in fish tissue

    WEBINAR: Changing Effluent Regulations in Canada 

  • EXPLORATION GEOCHEMISTRY

    BUREAU VERITAS OFFERS THE WIDEST ARRAY OF MULTI-ELEMENT PACKAGES TO SUIT THE NEEDS AND BUDGETS OF ALL EXPLORATION TEAMS

    Exploration geochemistry analysis typically consists of two stages - the first, comprising extraction of the desired elements followed by the second stage of element determination by instrumental analysis. Extraction can be partial to measure only non-resistive elements of interest or the extraction can be total to measure the total abundance of the elements from all minerals in the sample.

    Another technique, Neutron Activation Analysis, omits the first (extraction) stage of analysis, achieving referee accuracy total analysis with no sample preparation.

    Our laboratories are renowned for the use of cutting edge technologies to obtain the low levels of detection needed to meet exploration geochemical requirements.

    Our services include:

    • Aqua Regia Digest ICP
    • Fusion Techniques
    • General Chemistry
    • Laser Ablation ICP-MS
    • Lithogeochemistry
    • Mixed Acid Digest ICP
    • Neutron Activation Analysis
    • Vegetation Analysis
    • XRF
  • Metallurgy/Mineralogy

    MINERALOGICAL STUDIES ARE CRITICAL TO SUCCESSFUL GEOLOGICAL EXPLORATION AND THE PROCESSING OF ORES

    Our metallurgical division offers a full range of services from the early exploration phase through scoping, pre-feasibility, and feasibility studies for process development and flowsheet design including larger-scale continuous pilot plant operation. Our experience includes evaluation of precious metals, base metals and industrial minerals, environmental concerns and production aspects, using both conventional and newly developed technologies.

    We provide Mineralogical packages including:

    • Bulk Mineralogical Analysis (BMA)
    • Particle Mineralogical Analysis (PMA)
    • Trace Mineral Search (TMS)
    • FieldScan (FS) using QEMSCAN
    • MLA Express and optical mineralogy for both thin and polished sections
  • MINE SITE SERVICES

    BUREAU VERITAS MINERALS PROVIDES CUSTOMIZED MINE SITE LABORATORY SERVICES SUPPORTED BY OUR GLOBAL NETWORK OF PROFESSIONALS 

    Our goal is to provide you with a solution that meets your project needs, ranging from a remote mobile prep laboratory to a full service analytical laboratory at the mine. All labs meet the requirements of ISO 9001 Quality Management Systems and use validated methods and processes which comply with global OH&S standards. As we are the global leader in analytical geochemistry, we will provide you with a customized lab that will minimize costs and liability so your focus can be on mining and exploration.

    Our services include:

    • Supply of customized onsite laboratories (sample prep lab, containerized lab or full service lab);
    • Provision of analysis methodologies, safety manuals & maintenance guides;
    • Procurement of all general laboratory equipment and consumables;
    • Training and onsite support of laboratory staff by qualified Bureau Veritas staff;
    • Outsourced management of client site laboratories;
    • Auditing of laboratory operating procedures and management systems;
    • Inspection, testing & certification of mechanical equipment;
    • General safety and operational training of all mine site staff.

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