Tag Archives: ball mill

Metso Outotec to help modernise Nornickel’s Talnakh processing plant

Metso Outotec says it has signed an agreement to deliver its “industry-leading comminution equipment” to Norilsk Nickel’s refurbishment project at the Talnakh processing plant in Norilsk, Russia.

The contract includes delivery of one SAG mill and two ball mills with a total installed power of 36 MW, as well as two HP series pebble crushers. Metso Outotec will also supply spare parts and consumables, including metallic mill liners, and will supervise the installation of the equipment. The delivery is scheduled for 2022.

While the order value was not disclosed, Metso Outotec said the order has been booked in its December quarter 2020 orders received.

Sergey Dubovitsky, Senior Vice President, Strategy, Strategic Projects, Logistics & Procurement at Norilsk Nickel, said: “The modernisation of the Talnakh processing plant is one of the priority projects for Norilsk Nickel. Its implementation will significantly increase the volume and efficiency of production. To achieve this, we utilise the most modern technologies from Metso Outotec.”

Stephan Kirsch, President, Minerals business area, Metso Outotec, added: “We are pleased to continue our partnership with Norilsk Nickel. The supply of leading-edge equipment from Metso Outotec for the reconstruction of the comminution section at the Talnakh concentrator will enable an increase in the amount of ore processed. Our company has taken part in several projects with Norilsk Nickel to boost throughput rates of the processing facilities, and we are grateful for having been again selected to provide reliable solutions for a project as significant as Talnakh.”

DRA under budget and ahead of schedule at NST’s Jundee expansion project

DRA Global says it has completed its engineering, procurement and construction management (EPCM) contract under budget and ahead of time for Northern Star Resources at the Jundee gold mine, near Wiluna, Western Australia.

The Jundee mining operation is situated in the Northern Yandal Greenstone Belt, with the mine yielding a record 300,000 oz for Northern Star in the year ending June 30, 2020.

Jundee’s processing circuit comprises a two-stage crushing circuit, SAG and ball mill, and conventional carbon-in-leach plant. The ball mill upgrade, undertaken by DRA, increased processing plant capacity to a nominal design throughput rate of 2.7 Mt/y, from 2.2 Mt/y.

DRA delivered the EPCM project scope under budget and ahead of time, with ore commissioning achieved some six weeks ahead of schedule in a total duration of 35 weeks, it said.

“DRA’s project team achieved this outcome by working in close collaboration with the Northern Star project and operations team, the equipment vendors and construction sub-contractors,” it said.

Delivery of the project required overcoming challenges presented by the COVID-19 pandemic, including risk mitigation strategies being initiated to maintain the accelerated project schedule, according to the company.

Northern Star’s General Manager Processing, Simon Tyrrell, said DRA had consistently met and exceeded performance expectations through a collaborative approach to the Jundee ball mill project delivery.

DRA was engaged on the EPCM contract after having completed an engineering and cost study which included scope definition, design, planning, capital and operating cost estimation. The project follows several previous plant upgrades and studies successfully completed by DRA at the Jundee gold mine, which have contributed towards the continuous production growth seen at the mine over the last four-to-five years, DRA said.

The process plant shutdown and tie-in of the new ball mill was performed in conjunction with the Northern Star operations team and contractors without incident, and the process plant has since ramped up to run consistently above nameplate design capacity, the company added.

Zest WEG keeps DRC mining project on track in face of COVID-19 restrictions

The Zest WEG Group, a subsidiary of leading Brazilian motor and controls manufacturer WEG, is intent on keeping its customers’ projects on track despite COVID-19-related travel restrictions and has devised a way to complete the final step in the manufacturing process remotely.

In an innovative first to keep a customer’s mining project in the Democratic Republic of the Congo on schedule, Zest WEG successfully conducted a remote witness test of medium voltage (MV) variable speed drives (VSDs) in WEG’s Brazil factory.

David Spohr, Business Development Executive for high-voltage equipment at South Africa-based Zest WEG, said these extraordinary times called for extraordinary measures.

“With the restrictions on international travel, we had to think creatively about how to complete this final step in the manufacturing process – the witnessed factory acceptance test (FAT) – before the equipment could be shipped to the DRC site,” he said.

Under normal circumstances, these tests would require the customer to travel to Brazil and spend a week at the factory witnessing and signing off a range of detailed test and equipment requirements.

This order comprised two 7 MW, 3,300 V WEG MVW01 VSDs for the ball and SAG mill drive application and two 1.2 MW, 3,300 V WEG MVW01 VSDs for the high pressure grinding roll (HPGR) mill application. Both applications required non-standard features, according to the company, namely “frozen charge protection” software on the ball and SAG mill application and a “master and follower” configuration on the HPGR mill application, it said.

Spohr said: “It was essential that we did not delay the customer’s project, so we arranged to conduct the witness test using web-based communication software. This allowed the participation of Zest WEG experts, the engineering contractor and the end user, all from the safety of their homes in Johannesburg – communicating with five testing technicians in the WEG factory in Brazil.”

Using a high-definition camera and web-based communication software, the factory technicians were able to walk the contractor and end user through each element of the FAT, with clear and real-time visual images of the test results and equipment on the factory floor, according to the company.

The tests continued for three days, beginning at 13:00 and ending at 19:00 to account for time zone differences. Testing covered three key areas – PLC communication software integration, full functional testing and full load testing, according to the company.

“As with any other witnessed FAT, the customer was provided with a comprehensive results report by WEG,” Spohr said. “This enabled the customer to check, in exactly the same way, that the remote FAT results were within the required tolerances.”

Spohr noted that this pioneering step is likely to influence the way these tests are done in future.
“It has shown that the testing can be done to the same standards, but with significant savings in time and cost,” he said.

Metso wins major mill lining order from Russian Copper Company

Metso is to supply SAG and ball mill linings for the facilities of Russian Copper Company’s (RCC) in-development Tominsky processing plant (TPP), in Russia.

The TPP is RCC’s biggest investment project and one of the largest scale and high-tech projects commissioned in Russia in recent years, according to RCC. The plant will be constructed at the Tominsky copper porphyry deposit and will have a capacity of 28 Mt/y of copper ore, producing up to 500,000 t/y of copper concentrate, the company said.

The Metso contract complements two earlier mill lining contracts for RCC’s Mikheevsky processing plant, signed in December 2019, the mining OEM said.

With a combined value of approximately €24 million ($26.1 million), the three orders have been booked for Metso’s March quarter 2020 (Tominsky) and December quarter 2019 (Mikheevsky) orders received, it said.

First shipments started already in March, with the RCC deliveries covering almost one year’s worth of mill lining needs, according to the company.

Alexey Muzychkin, Metso Senior Vice President in Russia and CIS, said: “We are proud to be part of the construction projects of RCC by providing reliable supplies of equipment and spare parts for their plants. We managed to meet the tight delivery schedule required to ensure the smooth operation of RCC’s production facilities.”

Vsevolod Levin, President of RCC, said: “RCC implements the best available technologies at its operations, as well as installs equipment from the world’s leading manufacturers. For this reason, Metso is our long-time reliable partner in implementing the most ambitious projects. This ensures superior operational performance of our enterprises, as well as the safety of technological processes for human health and environment.”

RCC was founded in 2004 and is now one of the biggest copper producers in Russia, according to Metso.

It is a vertically integrated holding company with operational assets in Chelyabinsk, Sverdlovsk, Orenburg, Novgorod, Khabarovsk (all in Russia) and Kazakhstan. RCC manages eight mining enterprises, a hydrometallurgical plant, three metallurgical plants, and a trading company. Together, they cover the complete production cycle, from mining and processing to production and sales.

The company produces copper concentrate, copper cathodes and copper rods, as well as zinc concentrate, refined gold, and refined silver, with its production facilities able to produce 220,000 t/y of copper cathodes and 235,000 t/y of copper rods, Metso said.

Marks reveals Resolution copper concentrator details at SME

There’s some good news for mineral processing equipment suppliers looking to win business from the Resolution copper mine in Arizona, USA: the Rio Tinto/BHP-owned project already has a preliminary concentrator plan in place.

The sticking point is that, according to Anita Marks, Principal Advisor, Process Engineering, Resolution Copper, the plant ground-breaking is not likely for another eight years!

Speaking at the 2020 SME MineXchange Conference & Expo, in Phoenix, Arizona, on Tuesday, Marks revealed the plans for the concentrator at the mine, which when operational could become the largest copper producer in North America.

The project, situated close to the former-operating Magma mine, is currently in the process of deepening Shaft 9 down to a level of 2,086 m deep. The project partners will have spent over $2 billion (Rio Tinto share $1.1 billion) by the end of this year to develop and permit the project, including $302 million of additional expenditure approved earlier in 2019. Marks’ long timeline to groundbreaking is a reflection of the lengthy permitting process the project will have to go through.

Following the shaft deepening – expected to be completed in 2021 – and if the project receives the required approvals, development work for the block cave mine could start to take place.

At the same time as the company is focused on these aspects of the project, Resolution is leveraging the drill core it has obtained to calculate all-important metallurgical information and come up with a preliminary concentrator design.

The project has delineated indicated and inferred resources totalling 1.97 Bt at 1.53% Cu and 0.036% Mo from drilling, so there are many datapoints to draw from when it comes to generating a process flowsheet. It has used 79,000 ft (24,079 m) of core – including 38 full holes and 10 partial holes – 527 grindability samples, 646 rougher/cleaner kinetic tests and three pilot projects to come up with these plans, according to Marks.

Ahead of the concentrator, ore will be crushed underground – possibly with a gyratory crusher – and conveyed underground before being hoisted to surface.

The concentrator looks like having a SAG and ball mill configuration without a pebble mill (at least in the initial stages), plus a large cell bulk flotation circuit with columns for cleaning. It would have a separate float for tailings separation and produce both a copper and molybdenum concentrate.

This has the potential block cave mine producing 120,000 t/d of ore, with plant availability expected to be 92%.

And water consumption and recycling are high on the priority list for the project, with Marks saying the company is trying to reclaim as much water as possible. A tailings thickener is expected at the concentrator itself, with the aim to capture 80-85% of the water used in the process, she said.

FLSmidth to help modernise crushing, grinding circuit at Zijin’s Serbia copper op

Zijin Mining Group has chosen an FLSmidth gyratory crusher, SAG mill and ball mill for the Majdanpek mine, part of the Chinese mining company’s majority owned Zijin Bor copper mine, in Serbia.

The delivery of the equipment to Majdanpek, 180 km from Belgrade, is expected to occur between 12 and 18 months from now, with the project estimated to reach completion by the end of 2020. The order has a combined value of around DKK200 million ($30 million), according to FLSmidth, and has been recognised in the order intake for the September quarter.

The order of the new FLSmidth crushing and grinding circuit for the front end of the concentrator comes as Zijin looks to modernise Majdanpek, which will be the largest of its three Serbian copper concentrators, FLSmidth said.

Acquired as part of the majority acquisition of Bor in late 2018, the Majdanpek mine uses open-pit mining and flotation to produce copper concentrates, with a designed mining and processing scale of 10 Mt/y, according to Zijin. The operation is currently at a scale of 6 Mt/y, it said.

In the next six years, the company says it plans to invest more than $1 billion in the upgrading, expansion, or construction of the four mines and smelter at Bor. After the completion of the first phase of the project, it is estimated output will go to 82,000 t/y of copper in concentrates, with the smelter producing 80,000 t/y of copper cathode. After the completion of phase two, this could go to 120,000 t/y of concentrate and 150,000 t/y of cathode.

Manfred Schaffer, President of Mining and Group Executive Vice President at FLSmidth, said: “This extensive order underlines the strong value proposition of FLSmidth to our customers in the copper industry. Our market leading crushers and mills will provide significant improvements for Zijin Mining in terms of productivity and processing efficiency.”

Flotation and grinding circuit classification rise to the top in CEEC awards

The Coalition for Energy Efficient Comminution (CEEC) has announced the recipients of its 2019 CEEC Medals, which are granted annually to authors of outstanding papers presenting “innovative approaches to enhancing energy efficiency in comminution and mineral processing”.

Dr Zeljka Pokrajcic, CEEC Medal Evaluation Committee Chair, announced that the CEEC Medal for Technical Research was awarded to Laureate Professor, Graeme Jameson AO, and Dr Cagri Emer from the Centre for Multiphase Processes, University of Newcastle, New South Wales, Australia, for their publication, ‘Coarse chalcopyrite recovery in a universal froth flotation machine.

The CEEC Medal for Operations was awarded to Kyle Bartholomew, Rob McIvor and Omar Arafat from Metcom Technologies, Grand Rapids, Minnesota, USA, for their publication, ‘A guide to maximising ball mill circuit classification system efficiency (CSE), for operators and equipment designers.’

Dr Pokrajcic said: “The Evaluation Committee closely considered a number of high quality nominations from leading global industry experts before shortlisting two research papers and three operations papers.”

Jameson and Emer’s (pictured) CEEC Medal winning paper was published in Minerals Engineering (134, 118-133) in January and documents a flotation device, the NovaCell. The NovaCell features a fluidised bed for coarse particle collection and a high shear aeration zone for ultra-fines separation, CEEC said. The researchers’ case study showed the device resulted in a 40% reduction in comminution energy and a 12% reduction in overall site operating cost.

Dr Pokrajcic said the entry was a clear standout in the Technical Research category, presenting high quality research that was well supported by strong technical information and cost analysis.

“The paper presents a new dual-zone flotation device for both coarse and fine particle separation. It reinforces important developments that are supporting industry’s move to coarse particle flotation at scale,” Dr Pokrajcic said.

“This work shows leadership in flotation approaches that can significantly improve comminution efficiency and productivity. It also provides a compelling case for the reduction of operating and capital costs by removing coarse size waste in the comminution circuit.”

The winning Operations Medal paper by Bartholomew, McIvor and Arafat was presented at the 14th AusIMM Mill Operators’ Conference, in Brisbane, in August 2018.

Dr Pokrajcic said the paper provided a “useful methodology for measuring and improving classification efficiency in a grinding circuit”, highlighting the importance of classification in comminution circuits to improve efficiency and productivity.

The paper’s case study measured an almost 25% increase in the generation of new -25 micron material following an increase in ball mill re-circulating load and optimising cyclone performance, according to CEEC.

“The three authors from Metcom Technologies are highly regarded contributors to the field of comminution efficiency, last year publishing (along with Jim Finch) a paper on ball mill classification system optimisation that was Highly Commended by the CEEC Medal judges,” CEEC said.

Dr Pokrajcic said: “This year’s exceptional CEEC Medal winning paper by Bartholomew, McIvor and Arafat provides a succinct, clear, systematic approach to practical operational improvements that not only helps inform operations of the efficiencies that can be achieved, but also demonstrates the economic case for change.”

The 2019 CEEC Medal Evaluation Committee also selected three papers for High Commendation. The recipient in the Technical Research category was Hamid Manouchehri for his paper, ‘How Far the Crushing Performance Can be Pushed? Cone Crusher vs Vertical Shaft Impactor (VSI)’. This paper was presented at Comminution ‘18, in Cape Town, South Africa.

CEEC said: “Manouchehri’s paper presented an adept comparison of the conventional cone crusher and the VSI in a fine crushing duty, and third and fourth stage crushing duty.”

The judges added: “His trials conducted at pilot scale and at laboratory showed the VSI produced more fines, and in some cases product of higher porosity, reducing downstream power consumption.”

In the Operations category, Malcolm Powell, Sarma Kanchibotla, Vladimir Jokovic, Marko Hilden, Benjamin Bonfils, Anand Musunuri, Pamela Moyo, Sam Yu, Jace Young, Paul Yaroshak, Emrah Yalcin and Barun Gorain were awarded High Commendation for their paper, ‘Advanced mine to mill application at the Barrick Cortez Mine.’ This paper was presented at the 14th AusIMM Mill Operators’ Conference.

The CEEC Medal Evaluation judges commented that this was an “outstanding paper” building on the commonly applied mine-to-mill optimisation where grade deportment and dilution, as well as blast movement during high intensity blasting, is considered and evaluated.

Also winning a High Commendation in this category was Berge Simonian for a paper titled, ‘Mount Milligan Mine Performance Update.’ Presented in January at the 51st Annual Canadian Mineral Processors Operators Conference in Alberta, Canada, CEEC said the paper detailed the optimisation and debottlenecking of a relatively new mineral processing circuit.

“Efficiency gains achieved through modification to secondary crushing screening, SAG mill lifter design and ball mill charge optimisation enabled the circuit to operate at throughput beyond design,” the judges said.

CEEC CEO, Alison Keogh, praised the CEEC Medal recipients and Highly Commended authors, saying their outstanding contributions help inspire and foster industry uptake of eco-efficient comminution and processing.

Keogh said: “The CEEC Board thanks the successful authors and each of the nominees for their important research efforts and case studies. These publications, shared widely via CEEC’s global network, provide tangible value by helping operators, researchers and METS companies take steps to operate more efficiently while reducing their energy usage, footprint and costs.”

To view the abstracts and to find out more about the CEEC Medal visit www.ceecthefuture.org/ceec-medal

Hummingbird making short work of second ball mill project at Yanfolila gold mine

Hummingbird Resources’ plan to install a second ball mill and increase production capacity at its Yanfolila gold mine, in Mali, is tracking ahead of expectations, the company says.

The second ball mill will increase throughput capacity from 1 Mt/y to 1.24 Mt/y when operating at 100% fresh ore and from 1.2 Mt/y to 1.4 Mt/y when processing a blend of ore types, according to Hummingbird.

The mill was deemed the preferential choice when considering the alternative option of installing a tertiary crusher, which was included in the mine’s definitive feasibility study.

Since commencing the project in September 2018, the company has continued to reach advancement targets and both the engineering and civil works are now fully complete, Hummingbird said.

Back then, the company said the mill installation was expected to set the company back $13 million, with the plant due to be operational this September quarter.

The Yanfolila crushing circuit is currently a two-stage operation incorporating both primary and secondary crushing circuits designed to treat a blend of oxide and harder ores. The ore is non-refractory and the process plant design uses gravity and carbon-in-leach for the processing and recovery of the gold which averages 92.5% over the life of mine.

Notable recently completed construction works include the mechanical installation of the mill, structural steel assembly, fitting of the feed and ball loading chute, and installation of the gearbox cooling system. Outstanding works include installation of the sump pumps and electrical systems, which are ahead of schedule.

“The project remains on budget and, furthermore, all equipment for the project is now on site, with procurement and logistics teams having successfully coordinated full delivery,” Hummingbird said.

Commissioning of the completed mill is due to start in July with full capacity ore throughput expected in August.

Dan Betts, CEO of Hummingbird, said: “At full capacity, the mine will benefit from economies of scale, with no requirement for additional staff to the second mill, so we therefore look forward to a lowering cost profile with increasing production rates over the life of mine.”