MIRARCO Mining Innovation receive $280,000 from industry innovation network
Sudbury’s MIRARCO Mining Innovation has received $280,000 in grant money from the Mining Innovation Commercialization Accelerator (MICA) Network.
The funding is earmarked to help develop a pilot plant in Sudbury that uses a biotechnology process to extract valuable metals out of waste piles at mine sites while simultaneously cleaning up the environment. MIRARCO’s industry partner, BacTech Environment Corp. announced the news on Aug. 14.
Using a proprietary bioleaching process, BacTech and MIRARCO want to test this technology in the Sudbury basin which hosts 100 million tonnes of pyrroholite concentrate.
Most of it is held by the big mining companies Vale and Glencore in special tailings areas. The metals in the waste piles, like nickel and cobalt, were not able to be extracted during the conventional smelting and refining process. A pilot plant using a bioleaching process using native bacteria is under development in Sudbury.