Kidd Creek Mine
It is the world's deepest copper/zinc mine.
Products: Copper & Zinc.
Owner: Xstrata Copper.
Deposit Type: The Kidd deposit is one of the largest volcanogenic massive sulfide ore deposits in the world, and one of the world's largest base metal deposits.
Ore Geology: Kidd Creek is based on a rich, steeply dipping volcanogenic sulphide deposit located in the Archaean Abitibi greenstone belt. There are two major orebodies, with associated smaller lenses. The ore is hosted in felsic rocks of the Kidd Volcanic Complex and is cut by mafic sills and dykes. Structural deformation resulting from several phases of folding and faulting affects the distribution of sulphide lenses.
Three ore types predominate: massive, banded and bedded (MBB) ores (pyrite, sphalerite, chalcopyrite, galena and pyrrhotite); breccia ores containing fragments of the MBB ores; and stringer ores consisting of irregular chalcopyrite stringers cutting a siliceous volcaniclastic host.
Geological setting & Stratigraphic section of the mine:
The Kidd Creek Volcanic Complex is interpreted to have formed within a proto-arc geodynamic setting, with the high silica FIII rhyolites a product of crustal extension during rifting and melting of the lithosphere (Wyman et al., 1999; Prior et al., 1999). A graben interpreted to contain the Kidd VMS deposit is consistent with this geodynamic setting and a recent volcanic reconstruction of the North Rhyolite by DeWolfe et al. (2003), suggest a minimum graben width of 5 to 7 km (Gibson and Kerr, 1993; Bleeker, 1999). Fissures that controlled the eruption and emplacement of the Footwall and QP rhyolites may be graben-parallel structures (Prior, 1996).
The simplified stratigraphic column in Figure 3 provides a general overview of the Kidd Mine stratigraphy and location of massive sulfide deposits. Komatiitic flows and intrusions constitute the base of the known stratigraphic sequence and likely formed a broad, low-relief lava plain upon which the Kidd Creek rhyolitic dome and ridge complex was constructed. The minimum thickness of the komatiitic unit is estimated at 500 metres.
Figure 2. Kidd Mine ore-bodies looking east from surface to 10,200 ft
Mining operation and reserves :
The mine started production in 1966 from an open pit. The orebody is now mined at depth through three shafts as the No.1, No.2 and No.3 Mines. Phase 2 of No.3 Mine is currently being developed. Mine D will extend Kidd Creek below No 3, from a depth of 2,100m to 3,100m.
Blasthole stoping with cemented backfill is used to extract the ore underground, Kidd Creek being the world’s second-largest user of cemented backfill (after Mt Isa in Australia). Blastholes are drilled using Ingersoll Rand, Mission and Cubex drills and broken ore is hauled underground by Tamrock load-haul-dump units. The hoisting shafts are equipped with an ABB Hoist Automation System, which has significantly increased the efficiency of raising ore from depth.
At the end of 2005, Kidd Creek’s proven and probable reserves were stated as being 19Mt grading 1.8% copper, 5.5% zinc, 0.18% lead and 53g/t silver. Measured and indicated resources totalled 2.6Mt at 2.2% copper, 6.3% zinc, 0.2% lead and 48 g/t silver, with a further 11.9Mt in inferred resources at 2.7% copper, 4.8% zinc, 0.3% lead and 81g/t silver.
Barrie, C.T., 1999. Komatiitic flows of the Kidd Creek footwall,
Abitibi Subprovince, Canada: In Hannington, M.D., and
Barrie, C.T., eds. The Giant Kidd Creek Volcanogenic Massive
Sulfide Deposit, Western Abitibi Subprovince, Canada. Economic
Geology, Monograph 10, p. 143-162.
Beaty, D.W., Taylor, H.P., & Coad, P.R., 1988. An oxygen
isotope study of the Kidd Creek, Ontario, volcanogenic massive
sulfide deposit: Evidence for high heat 18O ore fluid. Economic
Geology, v. 83, p. 1-18.
Bleeker, W., 1999. Structure, stratigraphy, and primary setting
of the late Archean Kidd Creek Volcanogenic massive sulfide
deposit: A semi-quantitative reconstruction: In Hannington,
M.D., and Barrie, C.T., eds.