Using dewatering systems to improve site efficiency
by PNG Business News - August 23, 2021
Photo: Multiflo® mega barges on site in Brazil
Dewatering is critical to a mine’s operations and more resources are being allocated to its optimisation. Traditionally, there’s been a tendency among some mine and quarry operations to view dewatering as something to be avoided at all costs – until it can’t be. Therefore, cost minimisation has been the primary focus when it comes to implementing a dewatering or fluid management solution. However, with dewatering becoming increasingly necessary, operators are approaching these challenges in more sophisticated and methodical ways.
The trends informing dewatering practices mirror many of those that are observable across all mining processes: a focus on sustainability and the efficient use of energy and other resources; customised, holistic solutions based on each sites unique geological and climatic conditions; and the emergence of new technologies, with a particular focus on real-time monitoring.
Dewatering solutions that are carefully designed and implemented have the potential to reduce energy usage, CO2 emissions and significantly lower OPEX over the life of the mine. The overall efficiency is affected by individual elements, but also by how these elements interact and operate with one another.
The renewed focus on pumping efficiency requires a significant shift in how many operators have previously approached dewatering and fluid management on site. Because most dewatering programs have been designed with the singular focus of lowering groundwater levels as quickly as possible, they often have excess pumping capacity and oversized pipes and pumps operating at only a fraction of their capacity – a process that’s inherently inefficient. This needs to change to accommodate the increased focus on efficient use of energy and water, which is critical to maintaining a social licence to operate.
Improving pump efficiency begins with effective monitoring. There have been enormous improvements in electronic control and communication systems in the last few decades. Real time reporting and control of pumping systems can now be an economic reality for almost any mine site. The more visibility you have over your fluid management on site – flow rates, operating pressures, groundwater level, water quality, system relocations, alternate drive solutions, equipment selections to reduce maintenance and repair cycles, etc. – the better placed you will be to install the most appropriate equipment. The industry is moving towards customised solutions and there’s a growing awareness that no two sites are the same, which means a one-size-fits-all approach to dewatering is neither cost effective nor sustainable.
Weir Minerals has a global team of dewatering experts who partner with mine operators to assess their specific requirements and provide integrated solutions. With a long and proud history of innovative engineering, Weir Minerals has a team of process and design engineers armed with the latest technology, specific process knowledge and site experience to optimise your dewatering management processes. We take advantage of our global capabilities and engineering skills to provide our customers with the best solution as quickly as possible.
With an extensive global network and the ability to service on-site or at one of our 130 dedicated service centres, we are always there when you need us - no matter how remote your operation is.
PNG Business News - May 11, 2021
New Report Identifies Major Carbon Reduction Opportunities in Global Mining
New analysis lays out the scale of the mining industry’s energy use and identifies ways it can be reduced using currently available technologies Materials such as copper, lithium and nickel play an essential role in the technologies like electric vehicles and renewables that will help the world meet its decarbonisation targets As demand for these metals increases, the mining industry must itself become more efficient and environmentally sustainable The global mining industry must move away from legacy systems and processes if it is to meet the challenge of decarbonisation, according to a new report released today which calculates mining’s share of global energy consumption and identifies ways the industry can aid the transition to net zero emissions needed to limit temperatures in line with the Paris Agreement. The report, commissioned by the Weir Group plc, analyses mine energy data from over 40 published studies to give a comprehensive understanding of where energy is consumed in mining and minerals processing. It shows that the total amount of power used by the mining industry – which plays an essential role providing the metals used at the heart of the modern economy – is equal to c.3.5% of global energy use. The metals produced by mining are critical for enabling the global transition to low-carbon infrastructure. But without action, energy use in mining itself is set to trend higher in the coming years as demand increases for metals like copper, nickel and zinc. The report suggests there are technologies available today that could make a significant difference to this trend. For example, it highlights that comminution – i.e. crushing and grinding processes – is the single biggest user of energy at mine sites, typically accounting for 25% of mining’s final energy consumption. This is equivalent to the power used by 221 million typical UK homes, or c.1% of total consumption globally. Comminution is therefore a natural target for the most impactful energy savings opportunities. Small improvements in comminution technologies can lead to relatively large savings in both energy consumption and greenhouse gas emissions. For example, a 5% incremental improvement in energy efficiency across comminution could result in greenhouse gas emissions reductions of more than 30m tonnes of CO2-e. The replacement of traditional comminution equipment with new grinding technology also reduces indirect emissions in the mining value chain, for example by removing the need for the manufacture of emission-intensive steel grinding balls. Of the remaining energy consumption by the mining industry, diesel in varied forms of mobile equipment accounts for 46%, electricity in mining (ventilation) 15% and “other electricity” 14%. Other significant opportunities identified by the report for reducing mining’s energy consumption include optimisation, big data and artificial intelligence. In addition, if zero emissions energy sources are deployed for mining equipment – e.g., renewable energy, energy storage and alternative fuels – then the industry may well be able to achieve zero emissions, leaving a relatively small role for offsets and carbon credits to play. The report comes as the mining industry is under ever-greater pressure to produce essential minerals that support some of the biggest global structural trends, from population growth to urbanisation and decarbonisation. Copper, nickel, steel and lithium are core components of electricity transmission and storage, electric vehicles and renewable energy infrastructure. The move to a decarbonised economy will result in increased primary consumption of these mined commodities, even after factoring for recycling, so it is important that mining itself becomes more sustainable. Download the independent Mining Energy Consumption 2021 report here: www.energysavingsinmining.com Commenting, Weir Group Chief Executive Jon Stanton said: “The mining industry is central to economic development globally, with critical minerals enabling the low-carbon transition required in the rest of the economy. But the environment in which it will operate in future will be very different from the past, requiring comprehensive change and investment. In short: mining needs to become more sustainable and efficient if it is to provide essential resources the world needs for decarbonisation while reducing its own environmental impact.This report is an important contribution to that debate which we hope will spark thoughtful conversations around the world on the way forward.” Alison Keogh, Chief Executive of the Coalition for Energy Efficient Comminution, said: “This report highlights both a challenge and an opportunity to revitalize cross-industry discussion and actions on decarbonisation and ESG solutions. We invite industry leaders to actively contribute and collaborate through mining-vendor-research partnerships and share knowledge. Together, we can accelerate improved energy, emissions and water footprint across industry faster.” Ricardo Garib, Weir Minerals Divisional President commented: “Weir Minerals is focused on making mining more efficient and sustainable by leading technology change in the industry. Our Enduron HPGRs are increasingly replacing conventional milling systems in comminution (crushing, screening and grinding) circuits because of their substantially lower energy consumption, finer rock reduction requiring less water downstream and potential for significant total cost of ownership reductions.” Stuart Hayton, Managing Director of Weir Minerals Netherlands, where the Enduron® HPGRs are designed and manufactured, added: “Not only do Enduron HPGRs require as much as 40% less energy than traditional alternatives, their wearable components last much longer and the maintenance time required to replace worn out parts is significantly lower. The estimated carbon saving of each Enduron HPGR in operation is equivalent to taking more than 3,600 petrol fuelled cars off the roads each year.” Notes: The report quantifies energy use in five commodities: copper, gold, iron ore, nickel and lithium. Bringing together mine energy use data from more than 40 published studies (each of which references dozens more studies) from 2007 to 2020 into a single narrative, the report aims to build a more comprehensive understanding of energy use in the mining industry. Using the current production rates of the commodities in question, and the energy intensities for each of the commodities, a total of 1,68 EJ/a (1,680,000,000,000,000,000 joules per year) has been calculated. This is approximately 0.5% of total final energy consumption globally. Published information indicates that the entire mining industry consumes approximately 12 EJ per year – or 3.5% of total final energy consumption globally. Assuming that present trends continue, there will be 250m electric vehicles on the road by 2030. To meet this demand, production of cobalt, lithium, graphite and nickel will need to be scaled up significantly. Current projections show that the current rate of decarbonisation globally is far below what is required to meet the goals of the Paris Agreement. A sustained decarbonisation rate of up to 7% per year, year on year should be sufficient to achieve the goal of a temperature increase of well below 2°C by 2100. For the mining industry, there are multiple ways to achieve decarbonisation including energy efficiency and fuel/energy switching. Many of these opportunities are starting to be explored by both the mining companies and the mining services providers, who see decarbonisation and energy reduction as a key way to reduce exposure to the risks of climate change.
PNG Business News - May 24, 2021
Weir Minerals announces major order of Enduron® HPGR with IAMGOLD
Weir Minerals is proud to announce another major order of Enduron® HPGR in Gold application with our valued Customer IAMGOLD. An Enduron® HPGR with rolls measuring 2.4 m x 2.4 m (length : diameter) will be installed at IAMGOLD's Côté Gold Project. This will be the largest HPGR in Canada and the largest in the world in a gold hard rock application. Weir Minerals’ Enduron® HPGR unique design is perfectly suited to IAMGOLD’s Côté Gold operations to achieve industry-leading particle size reduction and with the lowest total operating costs. Enduron® HPGR is the market proven HPGR with the mechanical design to support efficient and durable skewing thanks to its unique bearing arrangement and control philosophy Enduron® HPGR has a unique roll diameter-width ratio which maximizes throughput at the desired product grind Enduron® HPGR self-adjusting cheek plates provide equal sealing distance as flanges at minimum costs Enduron® HPGR is the market leader in large format, high tonnage hard rock HPGR Tim Lundquist, HPGR Regional Sales Manager North America: “Our Enduron® HPGR design will create energy savings of up to 40% compared to an equivalent SABC comminution circuit, while also significantly reducing the need for downstream grinding media. This power and grinding media savings will optimize total ownership cost and also account for a significant reduction in carbon emissions”. Weir Minerals prides itself in being close to its customers at all times. Our Weir Minerals Canada team and purpose-built facilities will be providing full HPGR service for the Côté Gold operations. For more information about Enduron® HPGR please visit enduronhpgr.weir
PNG Business News - July 01, 2021
Weir Minerals Launches Multiflo® Mudflorm Submersible Pump for Large Particle Handling
Weir Minerals, global leader in the provision of mill circuit technology, dewatering solutions and services, has launched the new Multiflo® MudfloTM hydraulic submersible slurry pump. Engineered for abrasive applications and large particle handling, the Multiflo® MudfloTM pump features a hydraulically driven wet-end specifically designed to efficiently and safely reprocess and relocate tailings ponds, maintain water retention dams and manage slimes and sludge ponds. The innovative solution combines the Warman® MGS pump-end, Multiflo® CB32 hydraulic cutters and ESCO® excavation teeth to provide efficient pumping of highly charged and abrasive slurries. Weir Minerals' unique Ultrachrome® A05 chrome alloy impeller ensures high wear resistance and the specially engineered suction strainer minimises the risk of clogging by preventing large solids & debris from entering the pump. Drawing on decades of Warman® pump design experience, the Multiflo® Mudflo™ pump is capable of pumping between 150 and 1,200m3/h, up to 82m head. The Multiflo® CB32 hydraulic cutters feature market-leading ESCO® Ultralok® tooth system to prevent premature breakage, avoid tooth loss and protect the integral locking system to ensure the continuous operation of the pump. Engineered by the Weir Minerals dewatering pump experts in Australia, it is available for global customers from July 2021. “The Multiflo brand is synonymous with high quality and long-lasting equipment. In designing the Mudflo pump, our dewatering experts drew from the very best Multiflo, Warman and ESCO technology and used advanced hydraulics to create an innovative and cost-effective new solution for mine dredging applications,” Cameron Murphy, Director of Dewatering Weir Minerals APAC said. Weir Minerals understands that success is built from enduring partnerships based on close collaboration and a mutual commitment to safety and technical excellence. “It is not uncommon for sites to use a combination of pumps, shovels, excavators and trucks for dredging applications. When one of our long-time partners in Indonesia contacted us about developing a custom solution for the slurry build-up in their sumps, we knew we could provide a better solution,” Geoff Way, Weir Minerals Dewatering Specialist said. “We’re problem solvers. We considered our customer’s pain points and engineered a new solution to efficiently and safely manage their site processes,” he said. The Multiflo® MudfloTM pump can also be retrofitted to competitor OEM equipment; the quick-hitch plate attachment ensures convenient installation and removal from hydraulic excavators. The Multiflo® Mudflo™ pump can be assembled on land, eliminating the safety risks associated with assembling pumps over water. Furthermore, the new hydraulic hose management system reduces the risk of hose entanglement and trip hazards, all the while providing a reliable hose bend radius to ensure smooth oil flow. The Multiflo® MudfloTM pump will be available globally from July 2021. Discover more at https://info.global.weir/mudflo
PNG Business News - September 16, 2021
Engaging the global crowd to design the electric mine of the future
Today, the Electric Mine Consortium (EMC) launched the ‘Electric Mine Simulation’ crowd challenge in partnership with the OZ Minerals Think & Act Differently ideas incubator and Unearthed. OZ Minerals, IGO, South 32, Blackstone Minerals, Evolution Mining, Barminco and Goldfields have committed to significantly reducing their carbon footprint. These seven mining companies along with a number of partner companies, have come together to form the Electric Mine Consortium, a collaborative group seeking to accelerate progress towards a fully electrified zero carbon and zero particulates mine. Electrification of mine sites is a critical step change needed for the mining industry to achieve a zero carbon future. Switching to electric and renewable energy represents a transformational shift that will change the way mines are designed. This challenge is about using simulation to understand the impacts of electrification on mine design and through this challenge the EMC is looking to find innovators that can help do this. The eight-week online challenge invites companies and individuals from around the world to propose an approach to designing an open architecture, mine design simulation platform that can initially be used to compare a fully electric underground mine with its traditional diesel powered equivalent. Brett Triffett, Transformation Technologist, from OZ Minerals explained, “there is a great opportunity to use whole-of-mine simulations that integrate all of the dependent systems so we can understand the holistic value in transitioning from diesel to electric solutions in underground mines. We would like to be able to quickly build and test different mine designs and compare things like productivity, costs, emissions and energy requirements. We think that eventually this capability could be expanded to include the entire mining value chain. We have invited the crowd to propose solutions because we are not currently aware of a platform that meets this brief. What we have learned from running previous crowd challenges is that there are often people from outside our industry who have ideas or technology that can be applied to mining. These people are often unknown to us and in many cases they are unfamiliar with our industry. By participating in a crowd challenge, innovators can access a new market and be supported in developing new products and business models.”. A selected cohort from from this challenge will join the Think & Act Differently incubator and be supported in developing a demonstration of their solution. The incubator program is a supportive environment that includes; funding, mentoring, opportunities for collaboration, capability uplift and exposure to mining data and mining operations from across the EMC members.
PNG Business News - September 15, 2021
Weir Minerals strengthens its partnership with international technology group, Andritz
Weir Minerals and Andritz have signed an agreement at MINExpo 2021 expanding their shared commitment and strategic cooperation to supply equipment for processing tailings in the mining industry. The foundations of this agreement have been built on a shared understanding and vision to enable the sustainable and efficient delivery of the natural resources essential to create a better future for the world. Since 2018, Weir Minerals’ and Andritz’s partnership has seen them collaborate on joint tailings projects. This shared history as partners – a collaboration made stronger by the quality of individuals on both teams – has reinforced their abiding belief that together, both Weir Minerals and Andritz are stronger. This shared success has led both Weir Minerals and Andritz to renew their on-going commitment and announce they’ll be expanding their offer to all regions around the globe. Utilising Andritz’s proven separation and dewatering technologies, Weir Minerals has strengthened its whole-of-mine capabilities, showcasing market-leading products from extraction to comminution, mill circuit and tailings management. ‘Weir Minerals has been providing tailings solutions for decades; we have dedicated research facilities – the Weir Technical Centre in Melbourne, Australia and the Sustainable Mining Centre in Venlo, Netherlands – that are challenging conventional ways of thinking about tailings, while also developing practical, innovative and sustainable solutions that will reduce operating costs and improve safety,’ Ricardo Garib, Weir Minerals Division President said. ‘Decreasing ore grades mean that mines are producing more tailings than ever before. One of the challenges with tailings management is that there cannot be a one-size-fits-all approach; each mine requires a tailored solution that carefully considers the minerals being processed, as well as the site’s climatic and geological conditions. Weir Minerals prides itself on having both the expertise and equipment that allows us to partner with miners everywhere to plan and implement tailings solutions based on their operations’ unique challenges and this agreement with Andritz enhances those capabilities,’ he said. ‘Andritz has a long history working across a range of different industries. We are very proud of the work we’ve done with Weir Minerals; together, we’re excited about continuing to provide a joint offering of sustainable and value-added tailings solutions. Both companies bring a different expertise and know-how to the partnership; we complement one another and ultimately it’s our customers who’ll benefit,’ Steve Huff, President Andritz Separation said. Tailings management forms an important element of Weir Minerals’ broader integrated solutions approach, which considers problems and challenges from all perspective and draws on a range of experts – process engineers, design engineers, product experts and materials scientists, among others – to identify potential challenges and opportunities and provide tailored solutions. ‘This latest agreement enhances our overall tailings offering and enables us to provide our customers with a complete tailings solution. Under the brand name IsoDry, we will continue to offer customers a range of mechanical separation technologies, such as thickeners, filter presses, centrifuges, and vacuum belt filters,’ Charlie Stone, Weir Minerals VP Sales and Business Development-Mill Circuit said. Weir Minerals has strengthened its tailings team to support the market and ensure that it can provide innovative solutions based on each customer’s specific requirements. The agreement provides the opportunity for potential future collaboration on technology, harnessing Andritz’s market-leading separation technology in conjunction with Weir Minerals’ minerals and tailings processing technology. Many of these products – Warman® pumps to transport fluid tailings, GEHO® pumps to handle paste, Cavex® hydrocyclones to dewater tailings and the Multiflo® range of dewatering solutions – have been integral to helping miners manage their waste for generations. Weir Minerals and Andritz have also reiterated their shared commitment to sustainability; it is an essential part of both their business and corporate strategies. Both companies have outlined ambitious plans to reduce their carbon emissions, while their approach to ESG initiatives extends to all aspects of their organisations. ‘Shareholders and stakeholders are rightfully demanding more sustainable mining practices and tailings management is an area where there’s a lot of scope for improvement. Weir Minerals wants to play a central role in changing how the industry thinks about and manages tailings. Ultimately, we believe that sustainable solutions are not only environmentally beneficial, but also reduce operating costs and minimise risk,’ David Almond, Weir Minerals Global Director, Product Management Process said. ‘Weir strives to make our customers more sustainable and efficient; it’s core to our purpose and at the heart of what we do. We believe that embedding sustainability throughout our organisation protects and creates long-term value for our stakeholders and secures the long-term future of Weir. Our approach to tailings management is an extension of our broader corporate strategy. There is scope to make long-lasting, impactful change in how the mining sector thinks about and manages tailings and Weir is proud to be one of the industry leaders,’ Jon Stanton, Weir Group Chief Executive said.
PNG Business News - September 15, 2021
STAKEHOLDERS VIEWS CRITICAL FOR BETTER RESOURCE GOVERNANCE: ALKAN
Head of the PNGEITI Mr Lucas Alkan last week in Wabag at the opening of the consultation. The Head of the PNG Extractive Industries Transparency Initiative (EITI) Mr. Lucas Alkan has issued a strong challenge to stakeholders in the extractive industries to embrace and promote the work of EITI in Papua New Guinea to derive best value from the industry. Mr. Alkan spoke of this last week in Wabag when he opened the upper highlands regional consultation on a proposed law to transition the PNGEITI into a statutory authority. “PNG EITI is a government driven initiative to promote transparency and accountability in the PNG mining and petroleum space which has been driving the PNG economy for a sustained period of time. “But there is this misconception about proceeds from mining and petroleum activities not being translated well into development on the ground and this sentiment is shared by many at both the provincial and national level. “What PNGEITI is doing is to shed light on the leakages on revenues and proceeds from the mining and petroleum activities with the ultimate aim of improving governance in the mining and petroleum sectors using international best practice standards to see the desired development outcome from this important sector. “Seven years into PNGEITI implementation in PNG, we’ve now seen the need to make the PNGEITI administrative body, the PNGEITI into a statutory body to see more improvement in the EITI reports to enhance good governance in the sector to derive the best development outcome. “We’ve covered two regions; the New Guinea Islands and Momase regions and we are now conducting consultations in Enga and Eastern Highalnds to cover the big highlands region. “I encourage the best knowledge and views from all stakeholders from the stakeholders in these consultations so that we give birth to a law that truly reflects the genuine views of all stakeholders for better development outcomes. A State Technical working group comprising the Department of Petroleum, State Solicitor, Internal Revenue Commission, Department of Personnel Management, Department of Treasury, the National Economic Fiscal Commission and Department of Finance were in the Enga capital, Wabag for a four days consultation for the Upper Highlands region” “PNGEITI has been in operations since 2014 effected by a NEC decision and now we are moving into the next step in anchoring this extractive industry reporting process into PNG’s legal and administrative system. PNGEITI published 7 reports detailing activities taking placing inn the PNG mining and petroleum space,” Mr. Alkan said. Article Courtesy of PNG Extractive Industries Transparency Initiative