Beyinhar Gold Mine, Sonid Zuogi, Inner Mongolia, China

Kappes, Cassidy & Associates

2007

Situation

In the 1980’s and 1990’s, small scale mining had been undertaken at the Beyinhar Gold Mine, located on prairie plains near Sonid Zuogi, Inner Mongolia.

In 2007, the client was designing Heap Leach Pads for the site and engaged us to assist with geotechnical investigations for the proposed Heap Leach Pads and associated mine processing infrastructure.

Solution

Our specific services included:

• Completion of a preliminary geotechnical investigation, consisting of test pits to identify near-surface ground conditions;
• Development of a scope for further geotechnical test work;
• Identification and liaison with the Chinese Geotechnical Testing Institute in Hohhot for local geotechnical testing;
• Review of the testing institute’s capabilities;
• Development of a schedule for preliminary testing of samples recovered during test pitting; and
• Provision of recommendations regarding the suitability of the near-surface soils for use as construction materials and for the support of structures.

Working in a foreign country proved to be challenging but communication barriers were overcome with the help of an interpreter.