Optimization of adaptive and sustainable gold ore grinding processes for better environmental and land conditions in the small-scale gold mining sector in Indonesia

Authors

  • Dadan Mohamad Nurjaman National Research and Innovation Agensy (BRIN) https://orcid.org/0009-0008-8137-5088
  • Harmin Sulistiyaning Titah Department of Environmental Engineering, Faculty of Civil, Planning, and Geo-Engineering, Institut Teknologi Sepuluh November (ITS) Surabaya, Indonesia
  • Adji Kawigraha Research Center for Mining Technology, National Research and Innovation Agency (BRIN), Indonesia
  • Ipung Fitri Purwanti Department of Environmental Engineering, Faculty of Civil, Planning, and Geo-Engineering, Institut Teknologi Sepuluh November (ITS) Surabaya, Indonesia
  • Wahyu Hidayat Research Center for Mining Technology, National Research and Innovation Agency (BRIN), Indonesia

DOI:

https://doi.org/10.15243/jdmlm.2024.113.5635

Keywords:

ASGM, cyanide leaching, grain size, grinding process, local resources

Abstract

The artisanal and small-scale gold mining (ASGM) sector largely relies on mercury in gold processing, posing potential environmental contamination, health issues, and land degradation. In the villages of Tatelu and Talawaan, ASGM operations, guided by local knowledge and resources, have transitioned to using cyanide leaching for gold processing sustainably. These operations utilize andesitic stones from river deposits as grinding media in the grinding process. However, the cyanide leaching results were not optimal, with a gold recovery below 60%. This leaves significant amounts of gold in the waste, necessitating further processing and the incomplete treatment of free cyanide waste. The suboptimal gold recovery in cyanide leaching is attributed to the inadequate grain size liberation during grinding. This study optimized grinding by comparing andesitic stone grinding media with steel balls and rods. The findings indicate that to achieve a grain size of 75% passing 74 um, grinding with andesitic stones takes 4 hours, while steel rods and balls take 3 hours. For a grain size of 75% passing 44 um, grinding with andesitic stones, steel balls, and rods requires 6 hours. With more precise process parameters, locally available andesitic stones can be an effective grinding medium to optimize gold recovery. In line with optimizing gold recovery, this will enhance ASGM's revenue, encouraging the adoption of waste management practices to alleviate environmental impact, health risks, and land degradation. This aligns with the promotion of sustainable practices within the ASGM sector.

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Submitted

21-09-2023

Accepted

28-01-2024

Published

01-04-2024

How to Cite

Nurjaman, D. M., Titah, H. S., Kawigraha, A., Purwanti, I. F., & Hidayat, W. (2024). Optimization of adaptive and sustainable gold ore grinding processes for better environmental and land conditions in the small-scale gold mining sector in Indonesia. Journal of Degraded and Mining Lands Management, 11(3), 5635–5646. https://doi.org/10.15243/jdmlm.2024.113.5635

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Section

Research Article