Jointly published with Landes Bioscience, Georgetown, USA
Softcover reprint of the original 1st ed. 1997, XII, 302 p.
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* Describes the theoretical background as well as biomining on an industrial scale.
Biomining is the use of microorganisms in the recovery of metals from ores. During bioleaching, metals such as copper, nickel or zinc are oxidized through microbial action from the water-insoluble sulfide to the soluble sulfate forms. Although gold is inert to microbial action, microbes can also be used in gold recovery from certain types of ores because as they oxidize the ore, they open up its structure, thereby allowing a gold-solubilizing agent such as cyanide to penetrate the ore. The book describes several industrial bioleaching and biooxidation processes as well as the underlying theory and biology of the microbes involved.
Section I — Overview.- 1. Mining Biotechnology: Research to Commercial Development and Beyond.- Section II — Industrial Processes.- 2. Bioleaching of Copper.- 3. The BIOX® Process for Biooxidation of Gold-Bearing Ores or Concentrates.- 4. The Design and Operating Practice of Bacterial Oxidation Plant Using Moderate Thermophiles (The BacTech Process).- 5. Heap Leaching of Gold-Bearing Deposits: Theory and Operational Description.- 6. Biooxidation of Refractory Gold Ores (The Geobiotics Process).- 7. Technical Potential for Bioleaching and Biobeneficiation of Ores to Recover Base Metals (Other than Iron or Copper), Platinum-Group Metals and Silver.- Section III — Process Fundamentals.- 8. Recent Developments in Modeling the Kinetics of Bioleaching.- 9. Physical Chemistry of Bacterial Leaching.- 10. Optimization of Biooxidation Heaps.- Section IV — Leaching Microorganisms.- 11. Mesophilic, Autotrophic Bioleaching Bacteria: Description, Physiology and Role.- 12. Thermophiles and Bioleaching.- 13. Heterotrophic Acidophiles and Their Roles in the Bioleaching of Sulfide Minerals.- 14. Molecular Methods for the Identification and Enumeration of Bioleaching Microorganisms.