Chuquicamata is an opencast copper mine, where a relatively poor copper ore is mined in impressive huge amounts. Modern mining and smelting technology allows the usage of such depostits at unrivaled low costs. The ore contains only between 1,13% and 1,18% metals, most of it copper, but also molybdenum and selenium in a very low proportion.
The Chuquicamata mine produces sulfidic ores, whilst the nearby Chuqui Sur mine, formerly known as Exótica, primarily produces oxide ores.
- Location: In Codelco, 15 km north of the city of Calama, Atacama Desert.
- 250km north-east of Antofagasta, 1.200km north of Santiago. (22°17′S, 68°54′W)
- Classification: open pit copper mine
- Dimension: Size of pit: L=4.500m, W=3.540m, D=800m. Production: 650.000 metric tons annually. A=2.800m a.s.l.