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Mount Lyell Acid Mine Drainage Remediation

River water contaminated with Copper

Via an RFP process, Fenix Hydromet were selected to conduct testwork, design and cost a plant to treat the Acid Mine Drainage at Mount Lyell, part of the World Heritage area. Key challenges are the large volumes caused by rainfall events and the low tenors.

The specific objectives of Fenix’s work were to:

  • Identify a process solution to remove 90% of the Cu in the AMD and recover the Cu as a commercially saleable product
  • Identify opportunities for integration with Copper Mines of Tasmania’s plant
  • Design plant and produce capital and operating cost estimates with accuracy +/- 30%.

Fenix conducted testwork on site, supplementing previous cementation testwork completed by the Department which had indicated that cementation was an effective treatment process and fabricating equipment for testing. This testwork showed that the optimal process option is to utilise RIP in conjunction with partial neutralisation and cementation to produce a copper product.

Five alternative plant design options and their associated estimated costings were developed, these were subjected to an external review by an international engineering company and accepted by the client.  The project has been submitted to the Federal Government for funding.

Working with local contractors

Assembling cementation cone on site

Elution samples

Copper Cement samples

Client contact:            Alison Hughes, Project Manager Remediation, Department of Primary Industries, Parks, Water and Environment, 7th floor, 134 Macquarie St, Hobart TAS 7000

Tel:  +61 3 6216 4297

Email :

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