Program B

Optimising the grinding, flotation and leaching stages

The aim of this program is to maximise concentrate production at the target grade at the lowest possible cost. To do this, we are integrating grinding and flotation to maximise mill feed tonnage within the constraint of recovery in rougher flotation and final concentrate grade.

The key process variable linking grinding and flotation as well as leach circuits is the degree of liberation of the value mineral, a parameter usually measured off-line in geometallurgical programs. We are developing new soft and hard sensors for in-situ measurements of liberation. Leach circuits show variable performance due to variable value and gangue mineralogy and, in cases, variability in reagent consumption.

Research challenge

Real time predictive models in grinding, flotation and leach circuits using the existing sensor suite at site. This will help identify new opportunities for process optimisation, and identify new sensor data feeds that could be incorporated into the models. This may include new vibration sensors to monitor hydrocyclone performance, mill volumetric load, liberation sensing and new robust sensors for acid leach systems.


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Research projects

Stage project B1: grinding circuit

These project are part of Research Group 1 - Comminution.

Stage project B2: floating circuit

These project are part of Research Group 2 - Flotation

Stage project B3: tails leach circuit

These project are part of Research Group 3 - Leaching

Translation projects