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:: Metso Partners with Australian University in Grinding Applications Research
Metso and the University of Queensland in Brisbane, Australia, have finalized a three-year agreement encompassing joint research and performance evaluations of the VERTIMILL® Grinding Mill developed by Metso.
The project supports Metso's continuing quest to improve the effectiveness of its grinding solutions. The agreement is part of a longstanding relationship between Metso and the Julius Kruttschnitt Mineral Research Centre, known as the JKMRC, at the university's Sustainable Minerals Institute.
The project provides the JKMRC with the opportunity to enhance its already significant knowledge base in stirred milling while providing direct value to Metso and its technologies. According to JKMRC's Director, Professor Geoff Gault, Metso has been a strong supporter of research at the JKMRC, mainly through Metso's Brisbane-based Process Technology and Innovation business unit. "This project cements a strategic partnership that provides a platform for future cooperation for the benefit of both Metso and the JKMRC," Gault says.
The joint research project has a solid basis to build on. In the project, Metso and JKMRC will cooperate by sharing their expertise and methodology, and by further validating field performance in terms of energy efficiency, not only in fine grinding applications but specifically in coarse grinding applications. Metso has a rich laboratory history and has invested in, for instance, developing procedures for mill selection. As the application range of the VERTIMILL® Grinding Mill expands, this independent research can help to find better ways of operating, and validate the methodology.
According to Kenneth Brame, Senior Vice President, Comminution, Mining and Construction Technology, Metso, the importance of such collaboration is essential for continued success in the mining arena. "In order to maintain and increase customer success, we must develop new technologies and procedures that will address customer needs. This process requires a broad mix of competencies and dedicated resources, so university collaboration is essential to quickly gain and sustain momentum," he says.
Professor Malcolm Powell, JKMRC's Professorial Chair in Sustainable Comminution, comments that the JKMRC endeavors to cover the entire comminution and classification process chain in mineral processing. "We provide complete modeling and simulation capability, delivered via the JKSimMet processing plant simulator," he explains. "Fine grinding is playing a growing role in the beneficiation of finely disseminated minerals, so the JKMRC is actively improving its modeling capability in this area."
Metso draws from more than 100 years of mill design and manufacturing expertise, and over three decades of successful VERTIMILL® Grinding Mill applications. Since its introduction in late 1979, close to 400 VERTIMILL® Grinding Mills have been sold worldwide. The high-capacity vertical grinding mill has proven to be a versatile tool that exhibits many advantages over traditional ball milling. In comparison to ball mills, the vertical mills can perform the same grind with 30% to 50% less energy and significantly lower grinding media consumption. Furthermore, the machine has fewer moving parts than a ball mill, translating into lower maintenance and operating costs. These features bring substantial savings for the mining companies.
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