The Siemens J-Press filter presses will be used during the last phase of the Merrill-Crowe process, which is a zinc dust precipitation method used to separate gold, as well as silver, from a cyanide solution.
The filter presses from Siemens will help recover precipitated gold and silver over a six-day timeframe per filtration cycle. Six of the filter presses will each handle a flow rate of 1675 m3/hr (7375 gpm). The seventh Siemens filter press will be used to filter wash water from cleaning the filter cloths and floor of the process room.
The Pascua-Lama mine is believed to be the world’s first bi-national gold mining project, with 75% of the ore body in Chile and the remaining 25% in Argentina. The mining project is expected to be commissioned in late 2012, with first gold anticipated in 2013.