Pierina Gold Mine - Innovative solutions to heap leaching

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The Pierina gold mine is located in the Cordillera Negra in the Peruvian Andes, approximately 20 kilometres directly north of Huaraz, Perú at an elevation of 4,100 metres. Surface mining began in 1998 with the ore processed by valley fill heap leaching.

Ausenco has been working on the project for over two decades, providing Barrick with innovative design solutions for heap leach pad operations and best in class construction monitoring support services in a very challenging environment.

We partnered with Barrick to help meet their goals of sustainable economic development and protecting the environment. During this time we developed some industry firsts including: placement of the leach pad liner system on near vertical slopes; high head internal leach pad pregnant solution pond with vertical caisson pumping system; leach pad raincoat and surface water management system providing increase stream flow below the project, and one of the first compartmentalised valley fill heap leach leak detection systems.

Ausenco’s scope of services includes:

  • Heap leach pad design for seven phases
  • Resident engineering and construction quality assurance for 1.35 million square metres
  • Concept to feasibility studies
  • Geotechnical and geological engineering
  • Saturated and unsaturated flow models
  • Conventional and static liquefaction studies
  • Geotechnical monitoring of all civil facilities
  • Annual safety inspection of dams and heap leach facility
  • Closure plans
  • Water modelling including water balance and water surplus management
  • Sludge and sediment management

Project details

Geotechnical and civil solutions, Heap leach facility design, Mining engineering
Gold, Precious metals
Huaraz, Perú
Business line
Environment & Sustainability
1998 - current date
Solution phase
Evaluate, Innovate