Glossary of Terms
Below we provide definitions of certain mining terms used in this prospectus supplement.
A compound of two or more metals.
A light, malleable metal that is a good conductor of electricity. Commonly found in nature in oxidized form, bauxite.
The positive electrode at which oxidization occurs in an electrolysis reaction.
|Anode Copper |
In a copper smelter, the blister copper which has undergone further refinement to remove impurities. In an anode furnace, the blister copper is blown with air and natural gas to upgrade its purity to approximately 99.7% for copper. It is then cast into copper slabs that are shipped to an electrolytic refinery.
|Anode Furnace |
A furnace in which blister copper is refined into anode copper.
A chemical test performed on a sample of ores or minerals to determine the amount of valuable metals contained.
The horizontal floor cuttings along which mining progresses in an open-pit mine. As the pit progresses to lower levels, safety benches are left in the walls to catch any rock falling from above.
|Blast Furnace |
A reaction vessel in which mixed charges of sufide, fluxes and fuels are blown with a continuous blast of hot air and oxygen-enriched air for the chemical reduction of metals to their metallic state.
A drill hole in a mine that is filled with explosives in order to blast loose a quantity of rock.
Technique to break ore in an underground or open-pit mine.
|Blister Copper |
A crude form of copper (assaying about 98% to 99%) produced in a smelter that requires further refining before being used for industrial purposes. The name is derived from the large blisters that form on the cast surface as a result of the liberation of sulfur dioxide and other gases.
Development projects in existing properties.
A metal used in metal-protecting alloys; often produced as a byproduct of zinc refining.
The act of pouring molten metal into a mold to produce an object of desired shape.
In the electrolytic refining process, the refined copper that has been deposited in the cathode, starting from an anode in an acid solution of copper sulfate.
A carbonaceous rock mined for use as a fuel.
Fuel source comprised of bituminous coal from which the volatile elements have been eliminated by heat in a coking plant.
A fine, powdery intermediate product of the milling process formed by separating a valuable metal from waste.
The process by which ore is separated into metal concentrates and reject material through processes such as crushing, grinding and flotation. Concentrates are shipped to a smelter.
The facility in which ore is processed to separate minerals from the host rock.
|Continuous Miner |
A piece of mining equipment that produces a continuous flow of ore from the working face.
In copper smelting, a furnace used to separate copper metal from matte.
Very malleable and ductile red metal that is a good conductor of electricity.
|Copper Concentrates |
A product of the concentrator usually containing 20% to 30% copper. It is the raw material for smelting.
|Crusher (primary, secondary, tertiary) |
A machine for crushing rock, ore or other material.
|Crushing and Grinding |
The process by which ore is broken into small pieces to prepare it for further processing.
A method of excavating ore material in a stope and its replacement with waste material or tailings from a concentrator.
The lowest grade of mineralized material considered economic. Cut-off grade is used in the calculation of the ore reserves for a given deposit.
A mineralized body which has been physically delineated by sufficient drilling, trenching, and/or underground work and found to contain a sufficient average grade of metal or metals to warrant further exploration and/or development expenditures. Such a deposit does not qualify as a commercially mineable ore body, or as containing ore reserves, until final legal, technical and economic factors have been resolved.
Activities related to a mineral deposit commencing at the point economically recoverable reserves can reasonably be estimated to exist and generally continuing until commercial production begins.
The hardest known mineral, composed of pure carbon; low-quality diamonds are used to make bits for diamond drilling in rock.
Rotary rock drilling that cuts a core of rock that is recovered in long cylindrical sections, 2 centimeters or more in diameter.
A tool used to give a shape to material based on the shape of the tool itself.
|Dilution (extracting loss) |
The process by which the rock removed along with the ore in the mining process lowers the grade of the ore.
Reducing the cross section of wire by pulling it through a die.
A pile of broken rock or ore on the earth's surface.
Copper that has been refined by electrolytic deposition.
|Electrolytic Refining |
Copper anodes are placed alternatively with refined copper sheets in a tank through which a copper sulfate solution and sulfuric acid are circulated. A low voltage current is then introduced, causing copper to transfer from anodes to the pure copper sheets, producing 99.9% copper cathodes. Impurities, often containing precious metals, settle to the bottom of the tank.
The process of removal of copper from solution by the action of electric currents.
|Environmental Impact Study (EIS) |
A written report, compiled prior to a production decision, that examines the effects proposed mining activities will have on the natural surroundings.
Prospecting, sampling, mapping, diamond-drilling and other work involved in searching for ore.
A process for concentrating materials based on the selective adhesion of certain minerals to air bubbles in a mixture of water and ground-up ore. When the right chemicals are added to a frothy water bath of ore that has been ground to a fine powder, the minerals will float to the surface. The metal-rich flotation concentrate is then skimmed off the surface.
Appliance in which froth flotation of ores is performed.
The science concerned with the study of the rocks which compose the earth.
A very ductile and malleable, brilliant yellow precious metal that is resistant to air and water corrosion.
The percentage of metal content in ore.
Grass root projects.
Means of reducing ore into very small particles by means of pressure or impact. Different types of grinders are used in the processing plant to obtain the desired dimension.
A machine that crushes ore between an eccentrically mounted crushing cone and fixed crushing throat. Typically has a higher capacity than a jaw crusher.
An area of land equivalent to 10,000 square meters or 2.471 acres.
|High Grade |
Rich ore. As a verb, it refers to selective mining of the best ore in a deposit.
The machine used for raising and lowering the cage or other conveyance in a shaft.
The rock surrounding an ore deposit.
Technology for smelting non-ferrous metals, applications of which for copper are practiced at ISA's plant, based on plant and equipment of Xstrata and ISA's design including that for feed preparation, the smelting vessel, lance burner system, equipment for metal and slag lapping and handling, the specifications for refractories, and for flues and gas cooling and gas cleaning.
Extractable by chemical solvents.
A chemical process by which a soluble metallic compound is extracted from ore by dissolving the metals in a solvent.
A heavy, soft, malleable, ductile but inelastic bluish-white metallic element found mostly in combination and used in pipes, cable sheaths, batteries, solder, type metal, and shields against radioactivity.
|London Metal Exchange (LME)
A major bidding market for base metals that operates daily in London.
Thousand of kilograms.
A malleable and ductile silvery-white metal that is used in alloys.
The product produced in smelting sulfide ores of copper and lead or the smelting of copper bearing materials, usually in a reverberatory.
A plant in which ore is treated and metals are recovered or prepared for smelting; also a revolving drum used for the grinding of ores in preparation for treatment. .
A treatment process involving fine grinding of ore followed by extraction of minerals.
Mines are the source of mineral-bearing material found near the surface or deep in the ground.
A naturally occurring homogeneous substance having definite physical properties and chemical composition and, if formed under favorable conditions, a definite crystal form.
|Mineral Deposit or Mineralized Material |
A mineralized underground body that has been intersected by a sufficient number of closely-spaced drill holes and/or underground sampling to support sufficient tonnage and ore grade to warrant further exploration or development. Mineral deposits or mineralized materials do not qualify as a commercially mineable ore reserves (e.g., probable reserves or proven reserves), as prescribed under standards of the Commission, until a final and comprehensive economic, technical, and legal feasibility study based upon the test results has been concluded.
A deposit of rock containing one or more minerals for which the economics of recovery have not yet been established.
An element often found in copper porphyry deposits. It is used extensively in steels particularly grinding steels and as a filament material.
A silvery-white metal that is very resistant and stable at ambient temperatures.
|Open-Pit Mine |
A mine that is entirely on the surface. Also referred to as an open-cut or open-cast mine.
A mineral or aggregate of minerals from which metal can be economically mined or extracted.
|Ore Reserves |
The calculated tonnage and grade of mineralization that can be extracted profitably; classified as possible, probable and proven according to the level of confidence that can be placed in the data.
|Ore Body |
A natural concentration of valuable material that can be extracted and sold at a profit.
A unit of mass. In the precious metals industry, an ounce means a troy ounce equal to 31.1035 grams.
Waste material overlying ore in an open-pit mine.
That portion of a mineral deposit within which sulfide minerals have been oxidized, usually by surface weathering processes.
A block of solid ore or other rock left in place to structurally support the shaft, walls or roof of a mine.
Any igneous rock in which relatively large crystals, called phenocrysts, are set in a fine-grained groundmass.
|Porphyry Copper Deposit |
A disseminated large-tonnage, low-grade deposit in which the copper minerals occur as discrete grains and veinlets throughout a large volume of rock.
|Precious Metals |
High value metals including gold, silver, platinum and palladium.
|Probable Reserves |
Reserves for which quantity and grade and are computed from information similar to that used for proven reserves, but the sites for inspection, sampling, and measurement are farther apart or are otherwise less adequately spaced. The degree of assurance, although lower than that for proven reserves, is high enough to assume continuity between points of observation.
A project is a prospect that after the initial drilling program indicates the existence of a possible ore deposit that requires further evaluation through an extensive drilling program to continue with the evaluation.
A prospect is the initial stage of a geological evaluation of a possible project that requires drilling to evaluate.
Reserves for which (a) quantities are computed from dimensions revealed in outcrops, trenches, workings or drill holes; (b) grade and/or quality are computed from the results of detailed sampling; and (c) sites for inspection, sampling and measurement are spaced so closely and the geologic character is sufficiently defined that the size, shape, depth and mineral content of the reserves are well established.
The restoration of a site after mining or exploration activity is completed.
The percentage of valuable metal in the ore that is recovered by metallurgical treatment.
A metallurgical plant in which the refining of metals takes place.
Purifying the matte or impure metal undertaken to obtain a pure metal or mixture with specific properties.
|Refining Charge |
The fees charged by a refinery for purifying crude metallic products.
That part of a mineral deposit which could be economically and legally extracted or produced at the time of the reserve determination.
A mass containing a combination of minerals.
|Room-and-Pillar Mining |
A method of mining flat-lying ore deposits in which the mined-out area, or rooms, are separated by pillars of approximately the same size.
An amount of money paid at regular intervals by the lessee or operator of an exploration or mining property to the owner of the ground. Generally based on a certain amount per ton or a percentage of the total production or profits. Also, the fee paid for the right to use a patented process.
A small portion of rock or a mineral deposit taken so that the metal content can be determined by assaying.
Selecting a fractional but representative part of a mineral deposit for analysis.
A vertical or inclined excavation in rock for the purpose of providing access to an ore body. Usually equipped with a hoist at the top that lowers and raises a conveyance for handling workers and materials.
|Shrinkage Stoping |
A stoping method which uses part of the broken ore as a working platform and as support for the walls of the stope.
A very malleable metal found naturally in an uncombined state or with other metals.
The vitreous mass separated from the fused metals in the smelting process.
Material discharged from a refinery after the primary valuable minerals have been recovered. Slimes may contain quantities of gold and silver.
A metallurgical plant in which the smelting of the concentrates and ore takes place.
A pyro-metallurgical process of separating metal by fusion from those impurities with which it may be chemically combined or physically mixed.
|Solvent Extraction |
A method of separating one or more metals from ore by treating a solution containing the ore with a solvent that dissolves the required substances.
|Solvent Extraction/ Electrowinning |
A metallurgical technique, so far applied only to copper ores, in which metal is (SX/EW) dissolved from rock using organic solvents and recovered from the resulting solution by electrolysis. (A combination of solvent extraction and electrowinning.)
A zinc sufide mineral; the most common ore mineral of zinc.
An enlargement of a shaft made for the storage and handling of equipment and for driving drifts at that elevation.
The process of removing overburden to expose ore.
|Stripping Ratio |
The ratio of waste materials plus leaching ore to ore mined in the material moved in an open-pit operation.
|Sulfide Ore |
Ore characterized by the inclusion of metal in the crystal structure of a sulfide mineral.
The working area in a mine from which ore is extracted.
Material rejected from a mill after the valuable minerals have been recovered. Changes in metal prices and improvements in technology can sometimes make the tailings economical to reprocess at a later date.
|Tailings Dam (pond) |
A low-lying depression used to confine tailings, the prime function of which is to allow enough time for heavy metals to settle out or for cyanide to be destroyed before water is discharged into the local watershed.
|Toll Arrangement |
A contractual arrangement for the treatment of any material in a smelter or refinery under which metal content of the smelted or refined product is returned or credited to the account of the customer of such smelter or refinery.
|Ton (metric ton)|
A unit of mass equivalent to 1,000 kilograms or 2,204.6 pounds.
|Treatment and Refining Charges|
Charges levied by smelter/refineries for the treatment of concentrate from mines. Particularly applicable to copper, lead and zinc.
|Troy ounce |
Universal unit measure of mass for precious metals equal to 31.1035 grams. One troy ounce equals 1.09714 avoirdupois, or normal, ounces.
A fissure, fault or crack in a rock filled by minera ls that have traveled upwards from some deep source.
Rock lacking sufficient grade and/or other characteristics of ore to be economically mined.
|Wire Rod |
A continuous length of metal for subsequent drawing into wire.
Bluish-white hard metal, occurring in various minerals, such as sphalerite.