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Detection and removal of uncrushable elements in crushing

Faena: El Teniente Division

Deadline 23/12/2022

Closing Time 4:00 pm

Due to the Caving process, the extraction of ore brings with it a quantity of uncrushable materials from the sinking of previously fortified sectors or old sectors. These uncrushable materials can be metals, wood, concrete, rubber, plastics, etc., which are mixed with the ore and must be removed in a timely manner to avoid undesirable events such as clogging, breakage of linings, cutting of conveyor belts and risk exposure of personnel during the removal of these materials.

Technological proposals are sought to detect and remove uncrushable elements in the following points of the process: Apron feeders; primary crusher bowl; and cleaning belts. The scouting process could lead to the identification and selection of suppliers for a bidding process of supply or purchase, whose scope will be defined according to the degree of maturity of the proposals or technological developments that apply to the open innovation process, which could give rise to a pilot validation test, or to an implementation if they are relevant and meet the evaluation and selection criteria defined by Codelco.

In order to encourage the receipt of value proposals, Codelco could grant incentives, prizes or benefits within the framework of this call for proposals for the development of the project.

  • The supplier may submit more than one technological solution oriented to detection and removal of uncrushables, or each one separately.
  • The supplier may submit different solutions that apply to the three points considered (Apron feeders, primary crusher bowl and cleaning belts) or partially to some of them.
  • The proposed system and its components must have low maintenance frequency and complexity, high reliability, heavy duty, given the aggressive conditions of the environment (particulate matter, humidity, rain, snow, material projection and low visibility).
  • The system must operate with minimal or no presence of people.
  • Both the implementation and operation/maintenance of the systems must generate minimal or no operational interference.
  • Detection and removal must consider all types of materials, not only metallic.
  • In the case of detection systems, it is required: – On-line, real time monitoring and alarm generation to act on the equipment involved (Apron feeders, primary crusher bowl and cleaning belts). – Consider that in both belts and Apron feeders, the height of the ore load can vary between 0.5 to 1.2 meters, so the solution must provide information both at surface level and inside the load.
  • In the case of unchancable removal systems, and given that human intervention must be avoided, solutions in the areas of robotics, remotization and mechanization are desirable, together with accessories that allow size reduction to facilitate their handling.

Challenge When clogging occurs due to uncrushables, it is necessary to carry out highly complex tasks and long detentions, which makes it necessary to implement a technology capable of reducing the risks to people and simplifying the tasks of extracting these elements for a prompt normalization of the process.

Risk of accidents and occupational diseases for people involved in the removal of uncrushables and equipment. Low crushing performance and productivity losses due to unscheduled stoppages.

In a random and unexpected manner.

Implemented sectors for visual inspection. Use of accessories, manual tools and support equipment for removal, size reduction and unclogging, specific to each case, involving human intervention. Use of metal detectors and electromagnets that have shown low efficiency in detection and removal as well as high maintenance and calibration requirements.

Optical cameras with artificial intelligence with good results in Apron feeders. The technological validation of an alternative based on GPR-GEM for detection of uncrushables in Apron feeder is considered as a line of work.

The following will not be considered in the background evaluation process: – Advisories, consultancies or engineering studies