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The Basics Sampling Science for Precious Metals Analysis

The process of taking small samples for analysis
The process of taking small samples for analysis to determine the precious metal content of a large quantity of material is the most critical. Small errors and sapling can there fore lead to large differences in the calculated value of each precious metal. Sampling science and techniques are used on primary sources of precious metals from ore samples at mine sites.

Due to the high value of precious metals very low concentrations are contained enviable primary or secondary sources. For example a platinum concentration as low as 2 to 3 grams per ton of ore or scrap material is often profitable to recover and refine.

The process of taking samples from drilling to analysis
Secondary sources of precious metals which are manufacturing scrap or end-of-life materials for recycling and  refining must also be sampled properly for accurate results.

The fundamental processes include preparation, homogenization, equation handling and splitting from bulk lots to prepare a small sample to represent the average composition of the large amount of material.

Homogenizing is the process by which the material is blended uniformly to facilitate accurate sampling. Splitting is the act of evenly dividing materials while avoiding any separation or segregation for example a typical sample size of 300 grams may be selected to represent the average composition of several tons of material once the 300 grand sample is sent to the analytical lab the sample will then be further split to obtain smaller samples used for analysis.

Homogenizing process

The science and techniques used at mine sites for obtaining or samples utilize complex statistical analysis. The same material from initial surface exploration is first panel sighs to determine locations for drilling core samples to map out or deposits and determine mind valuations.

Chip samples are also taken within an active mind. Evaluation or deposits are used to determine where to drill and to calculate the value of the ore which is required to secure financing for the mining operation.

Materials that contain precious metals for recycling and refining are collected in bulk lots it is critical to accurately determine what concentrations of each precious metal are contained in each lot for two reasons.

First is to obtain the technical information needed to determine which processes to use for refining or whether it is even worth the cost of refining.

The second is the financial consideration to place the correct value on each lot as the materials change hands from suppliers to fires. Samples are often analyzed by both parties and transactions with a third sample saved as a referee sample for possible analysis by an independent lab.

Video The Basics Sampling Science for Precious Metals Analysis


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Precious Metals Analysis For Sampling