Automated Mineralogy: An Important Tool for Forecasting and Trouble Shooting Plant Performance at New Afton Mine
As part of MEMO 2019 in Kamloops join SGS' Sarah Prout on October 21 as she presents "Automated Mineralogy: An Important Tool for Forecasting and Trouble Shooting Plant Performance at New Afton Mine".
Oct 21, 2019, 10:30
Oct 21, 2019, 11:00
Automated Mineralogy which includes technologies such as QEMSCAN (Quantitative Evaluation of Materials by Scanning Electron Microscopy) and TIMA (Tescan Integrated Mineral Analyser) have become an industry standard for flowsheet development which are now being used increasingly at the mill for documenting and troubleshooting plant performance. The New Afton Mine is a copper-gold mine designed to process 11,000 tonnes per calendar day, recovering copper, gold, and silver. Feed to the mill is a blend of hypogene, mesogene and supergene ores which is processed using grinding, gravity concentration and differential flotation. Monthly composites from flotation feed, tailings and concentrate streams are submitted for QEMSCAN mineralogy in order to document changes in the overall mineralogy, copper deportment and the liberation/exposure of the different copper minerals. The proportions of hypogene, mesogene and supergene ore in the mill feed are estimated from this information then compared to the current production plan and used in developing recovery models for forecasting purposes. The results have also assisted with troubleshooting issues such as losses to the rougher tails, particularly the copper sulphides in the coarse (>150µm) and fine (<20µm) fractions, and low concentrate grade due to entrainment of liberated Non-Sulphide Gangue (NSG). Mineralogical and plant data will be shown providing information on forecasting and supporting troubleshooting at the mill, with the key performance indicators displayed in a dashboard format for the mill metallurgists quick access.
Sarah Prout, Ph.D.
Sarah Prout is Manager, Metallurgy, Vancouver Operations. Prior to taking on the role, sarah served as Senior Mineralogist for 8 years. Sarah received her Ph.D. in mineralogy, petrography and economic geology in 2004 from Camborne School of Mines in the UK. Sarah has over a decade of geology and mineralogy experience. Sarah started her SGS career in January 2007 as a Mineralogist based in Lakefield and joined the SGS Canada’s Vancouver operations in 2010, as a Senior Mineralogist. While at SGS, she has developed extensive experience dealing with the management of process mineralogical projects using QEMSCAN, SEM, optical microscopy, EPMA and XRD analysis. With experience in dealing with global mining projects, she has worked on a wide range of deposits from base metals and iron ore to REE, U-Th and industrial minerals.
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