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MEI Online: Comminution: Latest News: April 10th 2015


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:: Best Practice: An Emerging Reality


Industry leaders agreed to two complementary strategies to drive forward best practice in mineral processing at the 2014 CEEC Workshop. Endorsing the work of the Global Mining Standards Group (GMSG), the Workshop delegates embraced the initiative led by the GMSG Industrial Comminution Efficiency team in generating global guidelines for standardised measurement of operating loads. Using standardised measurement processes will facilitate the generation of comparable data, essential to process optimisation.

Additionally, the work of Dr Grant Ballantyne (The Julius Kruttschnitt Mineral Research Centre JKMRC) surveying the comminution energy requirements of gold and copper producing mines has provided reliable benchmarking data. This data can be used to compare comminution energy consumption across different mine sites. The comminution energy per unit metal product is presented in a graphical form similar to a cost curve.

This simple technique allows individual mines to assess their current operational energy consumption against their peers.

Anonymity of the comprehensive, minespecific data is guaranteed and site to site variability is visualised by constructing an ‘energy curve’. The energy curve displays the potential energy savings and cost benefits of moving down the cost curve into more cost-efficient operating regimes. This approach also allows flexibility in the way comminution energy intensity is displayed (e.g. energy per rock milled or metal produced) thus providing a direct comparison between sites.

The easily recognisable curve format can be used to visualise the variability in energy intensity across the industry. The applications of energy curves are many and varied.

  • It can be used to map the position of the mine as production progresses with year-on-year analysis.
  • Circuit design proposals can be compared to current operational strategies to assess their benefits.
  • Operational efficiency improvements can be mapped to the curve to visually assess the magnitude of energy efficiency gains per unit achievable through various strategies.
  • The efficiency with which the various comminution devices achieve size reduction can be mapped to identify opportunities for improvement and the magnitude of achievable gains.

The full report from the CEEC 2014 Workshop may be downloaded from CEEC’s website.

CEEC: Processing Best Practice

  • 1. Compare current processing efficiency against industry distribution by participating in energy curve program on CEEC web site.
  • 2. Adopt the guidelines of the Industrial Comminution Group within the Global Mining Standards Group: metrics and methodologies for benchmarking of industrial comminution efficiency within the hard rock mining sector.




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