Medet
Mining and Processing
Complex

Medet Mining and Processing Complex

After a systematic geological exploration activity in the ore region of Panagyurishte, the comprehensive conceptual design for building the Medet Mining and Processing Complex consisting of an open pit mine, concentrator plant, dam and auxiliary facilities with capacity for mining and processing of 8 mln tons of ore per year was approved in 1961.

The Medet Mining and Processing Complex was the largest open pit copper mine in Europe and the third largest in the world at that time. It was the first to organize open pit mining and processing of copper ores with cut-off grade lower than 0,4 % - a practice which was later widely applied in the industry.

The approach for Medet building was impressive with its project scale and scope. The united production process included capacities whose creation was a task solved for the first time in the Bulgarian mining industry for the time being. On December 22, 1962 the complex was declared a national youth site and thousands of young people took part in its building.

"Lights over the town" - a Film about the History of the Company

The Medet Mining and Processing Complex was officially inaugurated on December 29, 1964

and the first tonne of copper concentrate was shipped on May 17, 1965. The full design capacity for mining and processing of 8 million tons of ore per year was reached by 1972. During this period the Medet Mining and Processing Complex was managed successively by the engineers Kosta Dimitrov, Ivan Savov and Dimitar Dachev. The first head of the processing complex was eng. Rashko Baltov. Eng. Ivan Savov headed the Medet mine. The regular production of molybdenum product started in August, 1965 and production of pyrite concentrate started in 1972.

The Medet Mining and Processing Complex worked with its full capacity from 1972 to 1983. During this period under the management of the engineers Ivan Gechev, Nikola Nikolov and Boris Gushterov the efforts were focused toward equipment modernization and new technologies implementation. New highly productive drilling and mining transportation equipment was delivered and the flotation circuit was improved. An automated system for loading and transportation processes optimization was developed jointly with the Bulgarian Academy of Sciences for the first time in Bulgaria and the countries from Eastern Europe.

The mining and processing complex has been occupying a leading place in copper production for the country since its establishment. For the period 1971 - 1980 г. it provided 80-82 % of copper ore mined in Bulgaria 66-68 % of copper production per year. Meanwhile, the traditions of the Medet Mining and Processing Complex served as a basis for designing and building the Kremikovtsi Mine, Elatstie Mining and Processing Complex and Assarel Mining and Processing Complex which was consolidated with it to establish the Assarel-Medet Technological Mining and Processing Complex in 1986.

"Medet" Mining and Processing Complex

After 1984 in compliance with the project the Medet Mining and Processing Complex started reducing ore mining and copper, pyrite and molybdenum concentrate production and it discontinued its activity in the early 1994. The machines’ rumble faded away, the pit bench lights died out, the workshops on the Medet area became deserted but ecologists continued their work by performing area rehabilitation with care for the environment.