Water quality monitoring is a critical environmental management practice for mining operations throughout all stages of the mining life cycle, from exploration and development through to operations, closure, and post-closure. Water quality testing is conventionally conducted with grab or composite sampling methods, which pose a plethora of associated technical, financial, and safety challenges. CMIC conducted a feasibility study for the development of remote, real-time sensors that identified the lack of sensors that detect metals as the primary gap.
The project will accelerate the development of remote, real-time sensors to monitor water for primary contaminants of concern at a diverse array of mine sites across Canada. The priority contaminants selected by the participating consortium of mining companies are arsenic, copper, and mercury. This development of the sensors will help overcome the challenges associated with grab sampling and provide significant benefits to mine operators and stakeholders at large.
Expected outcomes and benefits
The project will advance the development of water quality sensors for metals that are of primary concern for mining companies and stakeholders, including as part of regulatory requirements. The initial parameters identified by the consortium of participating mining companies are arsenic (typically of primary importance for gold companies), copper (for copper and gold companies), and mercury (for gold and many other companies).
The project team is made up of: