May 2024
Volume 75    Issue 5

Nitric acid pretreatment applied to a refractory gold-tellurides ore

Argumedo-Jimenez, Carlos; Chaverra, Dairo E.; Restrepo-Baena, Oscar J.


This paper presents the results obtained by processing a gold and silver telluride mineral concentrate from a mine in Colombia. An acid wash, also known as acidification, was carried out, followed by oxidation with nitric acid as a form of pretreatment. Cyanidations of the pretreatment residues were carried out, and the results compared with results from cyanidations of base materials. The removal of carbonates in the acidification, a tellurium extraction close to 90 percent during pretreatment, and a 30 percent improvement in gold recovery compared to the conventional process were achieved.

Full-text paper:
Mining, Metallurgy & Exploration (2023) 40:2051–2058,


Follow these easy steps if you are an SME member:
  • Go to . Sign in with your email address and password.
  • Hover your mouse over “Publications and Resources” in the top banner. Click on “Mining, Metallurgy & Exploration (MME) Journal” in the pull-down menu.
  • Scroll down and click on the “Read the MME Journal Online” button, which will take you to the Springer site as an SME member who is eligible for free access. (To see published papers on the Springer site, click on “Browse Volumes & Issues” in the blue banner.)
If you are not an SME member, go to for paid access. Or join SME at