Alaya has developed five solutions to optimize different stages of production. In this note we highlight two of them: the Digital Twins SAG Grinding and Mineral Concentration, which have increased the tons per hour produced by more than 9% and recovered 3% more copper, respectively.
In his work with four leading mining companies in Chile, Alaya has developed products to optimize the processes of agglomeration, leaching, mass movement of material ( Miner Plus ), SAG grinding, mineral concentration and waste.
Next, we explain what two of them consist of, which make stages where there is a large energy and water consumption more efficient. "If these processes are carried out well, it is likely that most of the copper will be recovered," explains Pablo Salinas, Alaya's Artificial Intelligence New Business Manager.
Digital Twins SAG Grinding
For this process, the company has developed a digital twin (digital twin) that allows to increase the tons processed per hour through recommendations of actionable variables.
In this case, analytics deals with the recovery of copper ore, through sampling and laboratory tests that provide information to the system. In addition, water injection, mill power, mineralogy, percentage of steel balls, among other variables, are studied.
The mining company where this solution was implemented managed to increase the tons processed per hour by 9.8%.
Digital Twins Mineral Concentration
For this stage, the advanced analytics solution also corresponds to a digital twin that allows optimizing the flotation process of copper sulfide minerals, preventing it from being discarded in the tailings dam.
In this process, the variables that are measured and provide information to the system are the volumes of water that are entering, additives, laboratory tests on the recovery of copper and cameras to monitor the behavior of the foam, among others.
The company where this system was carried out managed to increase copper recovery by 3% during this stage.
Developing and running these solutions takes around six months. These are based on models that can be refined as more data is obtained, increasing the predictive capacity. “On the other hand, the code structure of the solution can be improved over time, by reprogramming. Artificial intelligence generically becomes more robust as more time passes”, explains Waldo Fishwick, Deputy General Manager of Alaya.
unit cost decrease
Fishwick comments that for companies, using this technology allows the unit cost to be reduced by increasing the quantity produced: “That is the objective. On the one hand, the company that applies these solutions comes with more products and comes with cheaper products. That way you can compete better and all that cost savings remains as a profit,” he adds.
Finally, he adds: “There is another important element in the analysis. From an economic point of view, the amount of additional production is costless. Since it has no cost, the income it produces on the company's income statement is practically the value of the price multiplied by the amount of total product sold.