Search this website

With in-situ recovery (ISR), reactive fluids are cycled through ore bodies below the ground and pumped back to the surface, mobilising and drawing-off valuable metals with minimal disruption to the surrounding landscape. 

Supported by the Minerals Research Institute of Western Australia (MRIWA) and industry sponsors, Dr Ewan Sellers and his team at mining research agency Mining3 have advanced understanding of how this technology works in a variety of ore types and host rocks. By fine-tuning the chemistry of reagents to better match specific minerals and controlling fluid flow to reach target rocks more effectively, the Mining3 researchers have defined a path to making ISR practical for a wider range of valuable metals and mineral systems.  

“ISR is an exciting tool for accessing important resources in areas where mining might not otherwise be viable” said Dr Sellers. 

“By reducing both the capital costs and environmental impacts of metal extraction, this technology could help prolong the operation of existing mines in Western Australia or allow our miners to bring into production ore bodies that are not economic using conventional methods.” 

In releasing the report detailing this research, MRIWA CEO Nicole Roocke said “This work supports the growth of an important new approach to resource development.” 

“Low-impact mining methods like ISR have the potential to help Western Australia’s mining industry access the resources we need while decreasing impact of mining on the landscape.” 

“Through supporting this sort of innovative research, MRIWA is working to ensure a comprehensive understanding of potential environmental impacts of ISR extraction while supporting the future growth and sustainability of our state’s minerals industry.” 

The technical report summarising the research findings can be located here. 

For more information on MRIWA’s research program, contact Nicole Roocke, MRIWA on 08 6180 4343 

For more information on the specific research findings, contact Elinor Kirke at Mining3 on 07 3523 5500 


Page was last reviewed 3 July 2024

Back to main content