Tag Archives: FLSmidth

Evolution Mining studying open-pit, underground expansion options at Cowal

Evolution Mining says it is embarking on a prefeasibility study to further expand its Cowal open-pit mine as part of a plan to build towards 350,000 oz/y of sustainable, reliable, low-cost gold production from the New South Wales operation.

Currently on the E42 stage H cutback, Evolution said during a recent site visit that there is potential to further the life of the open pit by accessing feed from the E41 and E46 satellite pits. The study looking into a possible expansion is due later this year, with the company saying it could provide long-term base load ore feed for the operation.

The mine produced 262,000 ounces in Evolution’s 2020 financial year.

The Stage H cutback the company is currently pursuing is expected to see increased ore volumes and grade mined in the first six months of this year, with the strip ratio to fall below 1:1 in its 2023 financial year, Evolution said. It also says an equipment strategy review is underway, with opportunities to “rationalise fleet” with reduced re-handling.

The haulage and loading fleet at Cowal currently consists of 20 Cat 789C dump trucks, three Cat 785C trucks, four excavators (one Liebherr 9400, one Liebherr 994B, one Liebherr 9200 and one Hitachi EX1200), plus three Cat 992G wheel loaders. It also has six hired Epiroc SmartROC surface drills at the operation, one Drill Rigs Australia GC600 drill rig, five Cat D10T tracked dozers and one Cat 834H wheel dozer.

The open-pit expansion is only part of the expansion story at Cowal, with a feasibility study underway on an underground operation. This is factoring in 3 Moz of resources and 1 Moz of reserves, with high-grade orebodies open at depth, the company says.

A second decline (Galway) is due to be developed at Cowal this year, with diamond drilling set to commence next month. The 14,300 m of planned drilling will, the company says, help confirm optimal grade control parameters and convert resources to reserves.

Evolution Mining also has a permit to increase processing capacity at Cowal to 9.8 Mt/y, with near-term incremental improvements targeting a circa-9 Mt/y rate.

The process flowsheet at Cowal includes primary crushing with a Metso Outotec 54-75 Superior MK-II gyratory, grinding with an FLSmidth 36 ft (11 m) x 20.5 ft (6.2 m) SAG mill and FLSmidth 22 ft x 36.5 ft ball mill, and screening with Schenck and Delkor screens. Sandvik H6800 hydroconecone crushers, Metso Outotec flotation cells, a Metso Outotec Vertimill, and Metso Outotec stirred media detritors also feature.

Evolution also said it is testing technology that uses glycine and cyanide during the cyanidation process of gold ore at Cowal for potential significant cost savings and environmental benefits.

Lab trials with the GlyCat™ technology from Australia-based Mining and Process Solutions have been completed successfully, it said, with the next phase being pilot plant trials to assess variability tests and long-term environmental impacts.

FLSmidth high density thickeners optimise recoveries at DRC copper-cobalt mine

FLSmidth says it has delivered a thickener solution to help double production rates at one of the world’s largest copper and cobalt producers in the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC).

The order for the solution, which included six of FLSmidth’s high density thickeners, was placed in 2020, with delivery now completed.

The mine already had FLSmidth thickeners on site, with the company’s proposal for the mine’s expanded requirements  based on test work to confirm the characteristics of the material to be treated, according to FLSmidth General Manager Projects and Account Sales, Howard Areington.

“The tests confirmed that we could use a similar design to what we had installed on the mine some years previously,” he says. “This solution included six counter current decantation (CCD) thickeners and one pre-leach thickener, each measuring 31 m in diameter.”

These units deliver high solids underflow to optimise the recovery of dissolved metals, according to FLSmidth. In addition to the steeper floor slope, these thickeners were designed with a high torque ring gear drive design, with high tolerances that make for minimal maintenance over long periods of time, the company says.

“Our high density thickener design ensures consistently high underflow densities which allows the operator to sustain high production rates and better recoveries,” Areington says.

These CCD thickeners are manufactured from LDX2101 duplex stainless steel. This provides mechanical benefits without compromising chemical resistance, allowing the mass of each unit to be reduced, the company explained. The pre-leach thickener, which was not exposed to corrosive conditions, is constructed from carbon steel.

“We also designed and supplied five impurities removal thickeners, which are high rate thickeners, also in LDX2101 stainless steel,” Areington says. “The sizes of these units ranged from 20 to 30 m in diameter.”

Fabrication of the equipment was carried out in South Africa while accommodating the demands of the COVID-19 lockdown, which required careful planning and flexibility. With components and platework delivered to site, the welding and construction was conducted by the mine with installation assistance from FLSmidth and its agent in the region.

FLSmidth expands Central Asia presence with new Service Supercenter

FLSmidth has opened a new Service Supercenter in Karagandy, Kazakhstan, which, it says, will help meet high demand for service and technical support in Kazakhstan and Central Asia.

The 5,200 m² space will focus on the efficient delivery of mining equipment, component maintenance and facilitate rapid on-site service and 24/7 local support, according to FLSmidth.

It includes a 2,500 m² warehouse and a 1,200 m² workshop, as well as a customer service office, customer training centre and other support facilities. The Supercenter holds a range of inventory and a strategic range of lab equipment and spare and wear parts.

The centre has a primary emphasis on supplying solutions that extend an asset’s lifecycle, such as: repairs and rebuilds; equipment and component upgrades; parts and consumables strategic stocking programs; technical assistance; and customised service packages.

“The centre ensures customers receive the knowhow to optimise their operations, as well as support when it comes to inspections, process audits and technical issues,” the company says.

Mikko Keto, Mining President at FLSmidth, explained: “The main concept of the Supercenter is to get closer to our mining and cement customers across Kazakhstan and Central Asia and support them with the best solutions, fast access to spare and wear parts, and, of course, local knowhow and expertise. This move supports FLSmidth’s ever-growing focus on customer service and aftermarket.”

Sergey Gorbunov, Managing Director for Kazakhstan and Central Asia, added: “Our large regional installed base will be well served by this new Supercenter. It will allow us to work side by side with customers to better understand and solve their challenges – and to deliver sustainable productivity solutions to their operations.

“Customers can expect world-class on-site service, indoor repairs and refurbishment, exchange programs, lab testing, training and excellent spare part support. The Supercenter ensures 24/7 local support for on-site services such as installation, commissioning, maintenance support, shutdowns and turnkey solutions.”

FLSmidth takes gravity separation to a new level with Knelson GX Concentrating Cone

The latest innovation in semi-continuous gravity separation from FLSmidth is delivering a key breakthrough in performance that increases recovery and cuts maintenance downtime, according to the OEM.

For decades, Knelson gravity concentrators have been recognised for their recoveries of gold and precious metals, but the development of the new Knelson GX Concentrating Cone is set to take this performance a step further.

The new patented GX Cone delivers impressive recovery enhancements due to enhanced water distribution within each ring, according to the company.

FLSmidth explains: “As water enters from the base, it flows through zone separator nozzles for a customisable fluidisation profile. This allows for even distribution of water in each ring; the new design also significantly increases the active recovery surface area. The result is a step change in overall coarse and fine gold recovery.”

Test data shows that gold recovery in all size fractions, from course to fine, improved significantly with the GX Cone, according to the company.

By incorporating an advanced distribution of fluidisation water across the entire concentrating cone, the Knelson GX facilitates the highest possible recovery of coarse and fine gold. At the same time, balanced water distribution across the concentrating cone allows for a significant reduction in fluidisation water requirements while improving recovery.

The third major benefit of the Knelson GX is easier maintenance. Because it is made of a customised, abrasion-resistant and durable polyurethane compound, maintenance frequency and operational costs are significantly reduced, FLSmidth says.

Mike Lefler, Head of Global Product Line Manager for Precious Metal Recovery at FLSmidth, said: “The new Knelson GX Concentrating Cone is the culmination of over 40 years of research and operational experience and is exciting news for our customers. It delivers a win-win-win scenario: better recovery, less water use and less downtime due to easier maintenance.

“In short, it helps customers produce more with less resources – a central tenet of our MissionZero ambition to cut water and energy waste in mining by 2030.”

FLSmidth improves water balance at Mozambique coal plant with thickener tech

FLSmidth has been chosen as the preferred provider for four large bolted thickeners for a large mining customer in Mozambique.

Two of the thickeners are designed to reduce water load on the filters allowing for a drier filter product, while the other two thickeners recover water from the plant tailings.

The installation, which includes E-Volute™ feedwell technology for superior flow distribution, will contribute to achieving optimal water balance at the coal plant in Mozambique, FLSmidth says.

“The thickeners measure 45 m in diameter and will control the density of material to the belt filters, improving the plant’s output,” Howard Areington, FLSmidth’s General Manager for Projects and Account Sales in sub-Saharan Africa and the Middle East, says. “The design was based on the test work we conducted on the customer’s material, allowing us to determine the best thickener solution.”

He emphasised that a bolted thickener is quicker and safer to construct on site, saving on costs and improving quality control; both of these factors suited the project’s remote location.

“The extent of welding in the construction of normal steel thickeners typically runs into kilometres,” Areington said. “By contrast, the amount of on-site welding required by a bolted thickener can be measured in metres.”

The E-Volute feedwell technology improves flow distribution, leading to lower flocculant consumption, better settling rates and improved overflow clarity for the optimal performance of the thickener, according to FLSmidth.

Despite the COVID-19 lockdown, good progress was made on the fabrication of the thickeners in South Africa, according to FLSmidth Project Manager, Kevin Kockott. This has been managed by leveraging FLSmidth’s global resources and the design teams’ ability to work remotely.

“Our local South African office collaborated closely with our engineering hub in Salt Lake City in the United States, ensuring that our engineering work on the project was able to continue without interruption,” Kockott said.

FLSmidth has been involved with this project for almost a decade and has provided a significant portion of the coal preparation equipment. To date, this has included reflux classifier technology, pumps, screens and feeders.

FLSmidth to deliver dry-stack tailings solution at Hindustan Zinc’s Rajpura Dariba mine

FLSmidth has been contracted to deliver an integrated dry-stack tailings solution and a paste fill plant to Hindustan Zinc’s lead-zinc mine in Rajpura Dariba, Rajasthan.

The solution will ensure environmental sustainability and significant process water recovery, as well as reduce the footprint of the tailings storage facility, the mining OEM said.

The new order, which was booked in the December quarter, includes design, engineering, procurement, supply of equipment and the commissioning for integrated dry tailings and stacking along with tailings paste fill plant. FLSmidth will also supply two Automatic Filter Presses (AFP-IV™, pictured), two E-Disc filters and one 26 m diameter High-Density Thickener as the main pieces of equipment. The project is expected to be completed by February 2022.

This new order follows a previous tailings-related order for Hindustan Zinc at its Zawar mine site in 2018.

Hindustan Zinc operates beneficiation plants at Rajpura Dariba and Sindesar Khurd, which both discharge tailings to the same tailings pond. The tailings dam was reaching capacity for conventional wet tailings deposition and so Hindustan Zinc needed a way to resolve this issue, FLSmidth said.

The solution the company required would involve creating a small dry-stack tailings area with minimal environmental and physical footprint and also a method to backfill the mine by using an adjusted dry filter cake mix.

By choosing FLSmidth’s hybrid technology – a combination of the E-Disc filter and the AFP-IV Automatic Pressure Filter – Hindustan Zinc will now be able to achieve this and recover around 85% of process water, according to FLSmidth. This recovered process water can be reused by the process plant located at the mine site with minimum operating and capital expenses.

The cake from the E-disc filter will contain below 16% moisture and can be used for mine backfilling, while the cake from the automatic filter press, with below 12% moisture, can be stacked on the surface in a safe and compact manner, FLSmidth says.

“The solution will also significantly reduce industrial water consumption, something that is of heightened importance in water-scarce areas, such as Rajasthan,” the company said. “The site will also have zero effluent discharge, further boosting its sustainable mining goals.”

Manfred Schaffer, Mining President, FLSmidth, said the order was another strong “proof point” for the quality and flexibility of the company’s technology for filtration and engineering solutions for tailing management.

“This project resolves the customer’s challenge through optimum utilisation of available space and ensures the paste backfill requirements are met with the lowest possible operating and capital costs,” he added. “Importantly, it also secures a high level of reusable water for the mine site, which helps their sustainability efforts and supports our own MissionZero ambition.”

FLSmidth’s global thickener collaboration hits the right notes in Africa

The use of FLSmidth thickeners in African mining operations has continued to grow, supported by, the company says, global collaboration across the FLSmidth organisation’s offices in South Africa, China and the USA.

According to Alistair McKay, FLSmidth’s Vice President for Mining in Sub-Saharan Africa and the Middle East, the company is set to deliver six substantial thickener contracts to mines in Mozambique and the Democratic Republic of the Congo in 2020. McKay highlights that Chinese companies have been driving much of the growth in the continent’s mining sector.

“In our work in Africa with Chinese customers, we have found that our Beijing office plays a valuable role in ensuring streamlined communication and efficiency,” he says. “This allows a constructive combination of our local knowledge with the ability of our Chinese colleagues to facilitate relationships with our customers in China.”

This differentiator has enhanced FLSmidth’s acknowledged leadership in thickener technology in the region. The company will deliver 25 new thickeners, including high rate, high density and counter-current decantation thickeners, in southern and central Africa this year.

“The design work for these contracts was conducted by FLSmidth’s centre of excellence in the USA,” McKay says. “Given our established local infrastructure and experience in this product range, the thickeners were cost-effectively manufactured in South Africa and China.”

While the fabrication and platework was completed using local skills, the FLSmidth on-site technical support presence to construct and commission the thickeners at Chinese-owned mines in the DRC will integrate staff from the Beijing office.

“This improved communication between FLSmidth and the customer has negated the risk of any misalignment that could slow the process down,” McKay says. “In fact, our Beijing office has become increasingly involved in the full delivery process, fulfilling the role of the project manager. This is significant as the building of relationships across east-west contracts becomes increasingly important.”

FLSmidth offers full-service capabilities in thickener technology, McKay says, starting with bench or pilot scale test work to characterise customers’ material. This informs the customer’s flowsheet and equipment selection and sizing, and the right technology application for cost-effective, optimised operation, the company says.

FLSmidth tackles the need for higher power, throughputs with new TSUV Mark 5 gyratory crusher

FLSmidth has launched a new “digitally-enabled” gyratory crusher to, it says, deliver the lowest total cost per tonne of material processed, even when crushing the most challenging ore.

In response to the industry need for higher power crushing and throughputs for lower-grade ores, FLSmidth has developed the TSUV Mark 5 Top Service Gyratory Crusher, the world’s most opex- and capex-efficient gyratory crusher, it said.

FLSmidth’s latest generation gyratory crusher, the TSUV Mark 5, follows the success of the Top Service (TS) and Top Service Ultra Duty (TSU) models.

The unique top-service design prioritises safety, maintenance and efficient crushing performance, FLSmidth says. Unlike other gyratory crushers that require workers to get in underneath the crusher to perform high-risk maintenance, the TS range allows service and maintenance to be carried out from above, increasing speed, safety and simplicity. Additionally, the 100-plus tonne, fully-dressed main-shaft no longer needs to be guided into the eccentric assembly by hand. “Now, the shaft aligns automatically, dramatically reducing risk,” the company says.

All TS gyratory crushers are built for strength, durability and the ability to adapt to the various requirements of mine operators, but the TSUV design adds even more power, capacity and flexibility, to give mine operators a low total cost of ownership, according to FLSmidth.

The improved power handling capabilities of up to 1,500 kW allow miners to process more material as ore yields decline, enabling operations to remain competitive, while the crusher footprint has only nominally increased.

Optimised eccentric speeds ensure maximum throughput without incurring excessive wear rates, the company says. This is a finely balanced equation, based on extensive R&D work, which, together with the new service and operational features, gives operators the lowest possible cost per tonne of material processed, it explained.

“To offer even greater potential to optimise performance, the TSUV Gyratory Crusher is digitally enabled – giving operators more control over operations and availability,” FLSmidth says. “The ability to make fine adjustments to wear compensation, track equipment trends and instantly detect crusher obstructions will enable increased uptime, optimum equipment life and significantly reduce risk of unplanned downtime.”

The TSUV Gyratory Crusher can be connected to FLSmidth’s digital ecosystem, which provides operators with the benefits of both FLSmidth technologies and experience. A range of services is on offer, geared towards maintaining asset health and optimising performance, many of which can be carried out remotely, saving both time and money, the company says.

The TSUV Gyratory Crusher’s advanced control system gives operators a 24/7 view of performance metrics, enabling increased reliability, FLSmidth says. And, with further condition monitoring feedback and controls, maintenance can be more proactive, minimising the risk of unscheduled stops.

“Through a combination of all these features, the TSUV Gyratory Crusher achieves the lowest cost per metric tonne in operation of any crusher on the market and gives you the lowest total cost of ownership,” the company says. “This translates into a reduced environmental impact.”

Chris Reinbold, Head of Global Product Line Management, Senior Vice President, Mining, said: “We remain steadfast in our aim to reduce emissions from mining to zero by 2030. Increasing the sustainability of key equipment, like the gyratory crusher, is part of our core goal to invest in efficiency-focused R&D, to deliver the best available equipment to the minerals industry.”

FLSmidth’s digital R&D bearing fruit at the right time

As miners look for more digital solutions to ensure they can cope with the challenges that come with operating through exceptional circumstances like COVID-19, FLSmidth is leveraging decades of research and development to help them make this transition.

Terence Osborn, FLSmidth’s Director of Product and Account Management for sub-Saharan Africa and the Middle East, highlights that R&D is the lifeblood of the company’s new technologies. So much so, that it has some 80 projects underway to improve its mining-related offerings.

“The power of digital technology is certainly a key element of these efforts,” Osborn says. “Together with our Blue Box digital concept, based on our ECS/ControlCenter™, which is a cybersecure interface between our equipment and cloud data storage, we use our SiteConnect™ mobile app to monitor the performance of equipment and process plants in real time. The ECS/ControlCenter V8 process control platform sits at the heart of our digital vision, a key component in our growing portfolio of digital solutions and services that we call ENABLR.”

An example of this applied capability is an FLSmidth REFLUX® Classifier modular plant operating on a South Africa mine. Using SiteConnect, operations managers can have real-time access to over a hundred operational parameters on the plant. Data analytics linked to the cloud data can also generate time-based trends for instant viewing on the app.

“We have also developed SmartCyclone™ technology for our hydrocyclones,” Osborn noted. “This innovation uses sensors to detect wear and roping, a condition that reduces separation efficiency. By sending an alert when certain operating parameters are breached, the system ensures optimal efficiency is maintained, even as slurry conditions in the circuit vary.”

He highlights that the company’s machine-level solutions are offered as part of plant and process packages. At both plant and process level, there is also FLSmidth’s advanced ECS/ProcessExpert® solutions, which facilitate not just monitoring and control, but advanced optimisation enabled by state-of-the-art artificial intelligence technologies.

“It is important to remember that control systems need to be flexible, so that they adapt to customers’ needs and to their existing systems,” Osborn says. “With FLSmidth’s depth of expertise in software engineering and machine control, we can ensure that our machine-level systems connect with all market leading control systems – to seamlessly deliver the data that mines need for effective decision making.”

The company’s R&D pushes the boundaries of performance in a range of mineral processing fields. These include advancing its lamella plate technology in mineral separation applications, adapting its vertical roller mill for dry grinding in mining, and extending wear life of pumps with new polymers.

Checkproof app to help digitise FLSmidth’s maintenance, service workflow

Software as a service company, Checkproof, says it has expanded its agreement with FLSmidth as the mining OEM looks to streamline its maintenance and service work across the globe.

The move follows Checkproof’s work on digitising FLSmidth’s front line work on sites in China, India, Kazakhstan and Arizona (USA), it said.

To support FLSmidth’s work on maintenance and service inspections of its product lines, the CheckProof app is used to perform and report front line daily tasks in any mobile device, securing routines, traceability and follow-up work, the company says.

Checkproof has also been implemented to digitise processes and to support company improvements for quality control of final assembly inspections at FLSmidth’s manufacturing facilities, it said.

Having first implemented the app in China, in 2017, FLSmidth has now gone global with CheckProof.

Tony Durant, Head of Mining Service Execution Europe, Russia and North Africa, FLSmidth, says: “CheckProof has given us the opportunity to change the way we work; to build a coherent and standard methodology to digitise our maintenance services deliverables at one of our customer’s sites. It offers an easy way for us to monitor the status of equipment and all daily maintenance activities.

“The tool itself is easy to use and can be quickly adopted for different kinds of equipment maintenance scenarios. This, combined with the ability to construct libraries within CheckProof, allows working procedures with only minor adaption needs to be scaled quickly, so minimising repeated work creation effort.”

Håkan Holmgren, CEO and Founder of CheckProof said the latest global agreement with FLSmidth represented both a natural and exciting step for the company.

“It’s an acknowledgment that CheckProof generates results, and we are particularly glad to have the confidence of a world-leading player such as FLSmidth,” he said. “We will continue to work hard to support their day-to-day operations and to improve performance, for FLSmidth to reach their goals and offer sustainable productivity worldwide.”