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Characterization of clays in extraction zones

Faena: Minera Escondida

Deadline 08/02/2023

Closing Time 4:00 pm

The objective of this challenge is to identify
technological solutions to quantify the clay
content in Minera Escondida’s production
benches. The main clays present in the deposit
and that are of interest to quantify are: Kaolinite,
Montmorillonite-Smectite, Illite and Pyrophyllite.

The technological solution must consider
complex terrain conditions, where it must
interact with the normal operation of a mining
area, which make it impossible for personnel to
participate in the place where characterization is
required (inclined surface, suspended material
and irregular floor formed by broken material) as
well as complex environmental conditions and
eventually low visibility due to dust or adverse
weather conditions. In addition to interacting with
the normal operation of a mining area.

Studies and consultancy services

The complexity of the terrain conditions such as
uneven ground, suspended loads, presence of
equipment, low visibility due to adverse weather
and environmental conditions, among others,
generate substandard conditions that expose
personnel to risk conditions and limit the capture
of information of greater periodicity and spatial
coverage, giving it a discreet nature and requiring
more time and resources for its development.

Information of clays with lower reliability and
representativeness for mining-metallurgical
planning processes.

Information with uncertainty generated by the
spacing or spatial coverage of the same, as a
result of normal operating activities where it is
not possible to intervene due to limited
operational continuity, making it impossible to
capture spatial information.

Exposure to risk of the people involved.


Use of information from boreholes with inadequate
spatial coverage to be used in short-term

Near infrared (NIR) technology in blast holes.