Optimisation of Crushing Circuits

The system for optimising the crushing circuit is aimed at achieving maximum performance while realising required product quality. The solution can work both in adviser mode and in automatic mode.
Example of Crushing Circuits
Example of Crushing Circuits

Challenge

These factors in turn lead to reduced circuit performance and a decrease in product quality, especially due to:
Jamming and overloading of key equipment, leading to mechanical shutdown
Overflow or emptying of bunkers and stockpiles, leading to downtime of capacities
Suboptimal crushing: overdrawing, underdrawing, production of heterogeneous granulation
The complexity of controlling the crushing circuit consists of the following factors:
Insufficiency of sensors on equipment, including granulometers
No direct information about the quality of the ore and its considerable variability
The circuit is a multi-stage process, including recirculation and intermediate stockpiles and bunkers
Opacity of restrictions imposed by consecutive treatment of the ore
Frequent jamming and wear of key equipment (screens, crushers)
An imbalance between throughput capacities of adjoining circuits
Intelligent APC

The Conundrum optimisation system for the crushing circuit consists of three basic components:

Intelligent APC — responsible for the control and stabilisation of the crushing circuit

  • Assesses ore hardness at all key points of the crushing circuit, taking into account geological and technological data collected from the circuit;
  • Assesses ore granulation at intermediate points of the circuit without direct measurement;
  • Propagates the desired qualities and movement of ore, taking into account the simulation of stockpiles, bunkers and recirculation flows through the circuit;
  • Assesses the efficiency of crushers and screens;
  • Simulates the end-to-end movement of ore through the entire circuit based on the estimated ore quality and the specified settings of crushers;
  • Determines the optimal closed side settings of the crusher based on the circuit simulation model;
  • Predicts emergencies and shutdowns;
  • Predictive systems control feeders in stockpiles and bunkers to minimize the discrepancy between power and setting point;
  • Assigns proportions between feeders to supply the optimal ore granulation to the crushers.
Intelligent APC — responsible for the control and stabilization of the crushing circuit
To identify the optimal control system for the circuit, Intelligent APC:
How Intelligent APC works

How Intelligent APC works

Plantwide Recipe Adviser

Plantwide Recipe Adviser — connects the crushing circuit with the operation of the entire plant, takes into account ore properties and throughput of consecutive stages, and controls the entire circuit with recommended power settings and operating modes

  • The optimal quality and amount of ore required to achieve the maximum end-to-end performance of a crushing circuit or chain of crushing circuits
  • The quality of ore to be refined and propagated from circuit to circuit depending on the settings of each
  • Planned activities, such as maintenance, and its effect on the stability of the circuits
  • Discrepancies in sensor readings
  • The design of the process scheme and changes during crushing operations
Plantwide Recipe Adviser — connects the crushing circuit with the operation of the entire plant, takes into account ore properties and throughput of consecutive stages, and controls the entire circuit with recommended power settings and operating modes
To facilitate the optimal functionality of the Intelligent APC system, the Plantwide Recipe Adviser identifies the optimal system settings in response to the following:

How the Plantwide Recipe Adviser system works

Real time plant diagnostic

Real time plant diagnostic — responsible for the quality of incoming data, as well as for recommendations on retrofitting the circuit in order to improve its efficiency

Real time plant diagnostic — responsible for the quality of incoming data, as well as for recommendations on retrofitting the circuit in order to improve its efficiency
  • Assesses the quality of available data and signals their degradation;
  • Provides recommendations for the upgrading of the factory through the installation of additional sensors or equipment to improve management efficiency.

How the Real time plant diagnostic system works

The Conundrum system works with all types of crushing circuits and can realise improved efficiency even with incomplete mounting of sensors

Solution Visualization Screen
Solution Visualisation Screen

Results from integration of the Conundrum system

Up to a 60% reduction in the variability of circuit performance indicators
Stabilisation of ore sizes and quality at the exit of the circuit
Prevention of crushing circuit downtime
A 1−4% increase in the average hourly throughput
Industrial AI for metals & mining
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