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Copper Bioleaching in Chile

Pontificia Universidad Católica de Valparaíso, Escuela de Ingeniería Bioquímica, 2362803 Valparaíso, Chile
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Academic Editor: Anna H. Kaksonen
Minerals 2016, 6(1), 23; https://doi.org/10.3390/min6010023
Received: 30 December 2015 / Revised: 7 March 2016 / Accepted: 9 March 2016 / Published: 16 March 2016
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Advances in Biohydrometallurgy)
Chile has a great tradition of producing and exporting copper. Over the last several decades, it has become the first producer on an international level. Its copper reserves are also the most important on the planet. However, after years of mineral exploitation, the ease of extracting copper oxides and ore copper content has diminished. To keep the production level high, the introduction of new technologies has become necessary. One that has been successful is bioleaching. Chile had the first commercial operation in the world exclusively via bioleaching copper sulfides. Nowadays, all bioleaching operations run in the country contribute to an estimated 10% of total copper production. This article presents antecedents that have contributed to the development of copper bioleaching in Chile. View Full-Text
Keywords: bioleaching; copper production; large scale; sulfide minerals bioleaching; copper production; large scale; sulfide minerals
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Gentina, J.C.; Acevedo, F. Copper Bioleaching in Chile. Minerals 2016, 6, 23.

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