Prediction of Potential Acid Mine Drainage Formation in High Sulfidation Epithermal Deposit using Geochemical and Mineralogy Approaches

Rizky Syaputra, Ginting Jalu Kusuma, Abie Badhurahman



Identification of acid mine drainage (AMD) can be predicted using a geochemical and mineralogy characterization approach to identify rocks forming and neutralizing acids. Geochemical characterization using static and kinetic tests. The static test is the first step to determining the potential for acid formation in rocks by comparing the potential for forming and neutralizing acids, which are characterized by uncertain behavior that causes predictions to be inaccurate. Kinetic tests were carried out to predict the long-term acid-producing potential better. Furthermore, mineralogical characterization is needed to assess the importance of sample mineral content in predicting AMD. Tests were conducted on rock samples from high sulfidation epithermal (HSE) deposits in North Sulawesi, Indonesia. The samples represent the different geological domain conditions found in HSE deposits. The main acid-producing components are pyrite and secondary minerals (alunite) capable of buffering acidity. The results showed a lower change in leachate pH (from day 30 to 180) and were accompanied by the release of species (high dissolved metals).


AMD; Geochemical; Mineralogy; HSE; pyrite; alunite; leachate pH


[1] J. C. Carlile, and A. H. Mitchell, "Magmatic Arcs and Associated Gold and Copper Mineralization in Indonesia", Journal of Geochemical Exploration, 50, 91-142. 1994.

[2] S. F. Simmons, N. C. White and D. A. John, "Geological Characteristics of Epithermal Precious and Base Metal Deposits". Econ. Geol. 100th Anniversary Volume, 485-522. 2005.

[3] F. Sahlastrom, "The Mt Carltron High-Sulfidation Epithermal Deposit, NE Australia: Geologic Character, Genesis and Implications for Exploration". 2018.

[4] R. S. Gautama, "Pembentukan, Pengendalian, dan Pengelolaan Air Asam Tambang", Penertbit ITB. 2014.

[5] Z. A. Erguler, and G. K. Erguler, "The Effect of Particle Size on Acid Mine Drainage Generation: Kinetic Column Tests". Minerals Engineering, 52, 111-124. 2015.

[6] R. T. Amos, D. W. Blowes, B. L. Bailey, D. C. Sego, L. Smith, A. I. M. Ritchie, "Waste-rock Hydrogeology and Geochemistry". Appl Geo-chem57:140-156. 2015.

[7] B. Vriens, H. Peterson, L. Laurenzi, L. Smith, C. Aranda, K. U. Mayer, R. D. Beckie, "Long-term Monitoring of Waste-rock Weathering at the Antamina mine, Peru". Chemosphere 215:858-869. 2019.

[8] J. W. Hedenquist, and N. White, "Epithermal Gold Deposits: Style, Characteristics and Exploration". SEG Discovery. 1995.

[9] G. J. Corbett and T. Leach, "Southwest Pacific Rim Gold-Copper Systems: Structure, Alteration, and Mineralization". 1998.

[10] B. Yibas, "Oxidation Process and Formation of Acid Mine Drainage from Gold Mine Tailings: A South African Perspective". 2021.

[11] I. Hardjana, "The Discovery, Geology, and Exploration of the High Sulphidation Au-Mineralization System in the Bakan District, North Sulawesi". 2013.

[12] AMIRA P387A Prediction, "AMIRA P387A Prediction and Kinetic Control of Acid Mine Drainage". ARD Test Handbook. 2002.

[13] J. L. Jambor, "Mine-waste mineralogy and mineralogical perspective of acid-base accounting". In: Jambor, J.L., Blowes, D. W., Ritchie, A.L.M (Eds.), Environmental Aspects of Mine Wastes, vol. 31. Mineralogical association of Canada, pp. 117-146.

[14] K. A. Lapakko, "Predictive Testing for Mine Waste Drainage Quality". In Mine Operation and Closure Short Course. 1993.

[15] M. N. Mdumela, and F. Sengani, "Analysis of the potential of acid mine drainage generation from the neutralized coal mining tailings". Journal of Degraded and Mining Lands Management. 2021.

[16] B. A. Soregaroli, and R. W. Lawrence, "Waste rock characterization at Dublin Gulch: a case study. In: Proceedings of the 4th international conference on acid rock drainage", Vancouver, pp 631-645. 1997.

[17] W. A. Price, "Prediction manual for drainage chemistry from sulphidic geologic materials. CANMET Mining and Mineral Sciences Laboratories", Canada. 2009.

[18] W. S. Bradham and F. T. Carrucio, "A comparative study of tailings analysis using acid/base accounting, cell, columns and soxhelets". In: Proceeding of the 1990 Mining and Reclemation Conference and Exhibition, Charleston, WV, pp 19-25. 1990.


  • There are currently no refbacks.

Google Scholar Logo SINTA Logo Logo GARUDA

Copyright EKSPLORIUM: Buletin Pusat Pengembangan Bahan Galian Nuklir (e-ISSN 2503-426x p-ISSN 0854-1418)

National Research and Innovation Agency (BRIN), KA. B.J. Habibie, Jl. M.H. Thamrin No.8, Jakarta, 10340, Indonesia.