Post-conference Full-day field trip (19 October 2024)

Challenges, remediation and secondary prospectivity, Brukunga, SA

The historic Brukunga Mine was established in the 1950s as a source of sulphur to be converted to sulphuric acid for use in the manufacture of superphosphate fertiliser. Australian soils tend to be of a poor quality requiring applications of fertiliser to sustain cultivated crops. When the Mine was constructed in the 1950s the world was rebuilding after World War II and there was a great shortage of all materials. Mining ceased in 1972 and on-going treatment of the site started shortly after.

This field trip will focus on examining the evolving mine waste features at this former pyrite mine and discuss challenges, site remediation and secondary prospectivity. Delegates will visit key mine waste features at the site including the historical waste rock piles and the associated 3.5 Mt tailings, which have, to a degree, been rehabilitated. Delegates will be given an insight into how acid and metalliferous drainage forms in these environments, and will be introduced to active treatment methods used on site.

In 2024, mine waste at the site has been characterised in the context of secondary prospectivity. This trip will also provide delegates a unique opportunity to learn about the new field of mine waste exploration and gain a first-hand insight into the critical metal potential of the Brukunga mine waste.

Leader – Associate Professor Anita Parbhakar-Fox (Sustainable Minerals Institute, University of Queensland) & Moira Coffey (Department for Energy and Mining)

Tour Assembles: 8:45am - Adelaide Convention Centre

Returns: 5pm 

Cost: $200 delegate; $100 student.


Drive to Brukunga Pyrite Mine


Safety briefing, welcome and introductions to people to assist with the site visit

Walk through how we got to the situation today and the work to date to reduce the impacts (how well we’ve really done, key issues, what we've learned and what we hope for the future.. to lead into Anita)

The work done recently by MiWatch

1pmSite visits: 1. Pit, dumps, acid seepage pond, tailings, then plant and sludge drying ponds.
Drive to Adelaide Convention Centre

Field Trip Includes: Bus transportation and lunch. 

What to bring: Appropriate field clothing including sturdy shoes. Hat, suncream and drink bottle. 

Climate: Temperatures are variable during Spring with daytime maxima typically in the 20’s⁰C (60s -80s degrees F).



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