Preliminary Investigation of Innovative Processes to Recover Nickel from the Decar Deposit
The Decar nickel deposit is located in British Columbia. With more than 2 billion tons of reserves grading 0.2% Ni the deposit represents a significant resources. The nickel occurs in an uncommon mineral awaruite which is an alloy of nickel and iron. Due to its strong ferro-magnetic properties and high density (SG 8.0) it should be readily recoverable using magnetic separation followed by gravity concentration. However, the presence of significant amounts of magnetite which as similar physical properties makes it difficult to separate the awaruite from the magnetite. The deposit has been studied since the mid 1990s and thus far there has been no metallurgical solution. The proposed investigation is a scoping level study aimed at investigating a range of novel approaches. This short term study will be the basis for a larger longer term investigation of the more promising approaches.