2012 Mining History Association Field Trip

Bagdad Copper Mine, Bagdad, Arizona
June 10, 2012

Tour Host: Freeport-McMoRan Copper and Gold


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The Bagdad open pit mine got its start with a series of underground mines.Our Freeport-McMoRan guide briefs MHAers on the operation of the Bagdad Pit.

Rotary drills prepare a series of blasts that will push back the side of pit and provide access to deeper ore.

Electric shovels load 240-300 tons of ore or waste material into the giant Caterpillar 793 haul trucks.

Bagdad ore has copper oxide minerals, principally chrysocolla (top). The primary copper sulfide mineral in chalcopyrite (right).  Molybdenum sulfide, molybdenite (left with chalcopyrite), is a valuable by-product.

MHAers inspect a chunk of oxide copper ore at the pit overlook.

Haul trucks carry the sulfide ore to an in-pit crusher (just off the photo at the lower right).  A conveyor transports it uphill to the mill.  Trucks carrying oxide ore or waste rock proceed up the ramp to the leach or rock dumps.

Sulfide ore is paced on the stockpile where it awaits concentration in the mill.  Tailings disposal takes place behind the mill.  The molybdenum plant is also located near the mill.

 

 

Photo Credits: Mike and Pat Kaas

 

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