We invite you to register on our platform and characterize your technological solution, so you can participate in the open innovation processes that we carry on for the main mining companies in the country

Register here

Minimize or inhibit salt incrustation in recovered water transportation system


Deadline 19/11/2021

Closing Time 4:00 pm

Sierra Gorda SCM uses 100% seawater as a means of concentrating Copper/Molybdenum. The tailings generated from this process are transported and deposited gravitationally to the Tailings Deposit. The water contained in the tailings is subsequently recovered and reused in the Milling/Flotation process. The main components of the water recovery and transport system from the Tailings Deposit are Recovery ponds and pools/pumping stations. All this system is interconnected through a 12 kms long piping network (HDPE – 710 mm), reaching a design flow rate of 2,000 m3 /hr. Currently there is incrustation of gypsum salts in the pumping system and along the entire piping of the water transport system, causing a reduction in the available diameter and consequently a reduction in the flow rate.

Identify technological solutions oriented both to minimize or inhibit the incrustation of salts in the reclaimed water transport system, as well as to monitor online and in real time, thus facilitating the maintenance management of the water recirculation system. As an example, we are looking for solutions that can be classified in the following areas (without prejudice to other categories that may be proposed by the supplier):

  • Chemical reagents
  • Physical systems
  • Condition monitoring
  • Preventive maintenance

The following will not be considered in the background evaluation process:

  • Advisories, consultancies or engineering studies.
  • Proposals that require a change in the design and/or materiality of the water conveyance system.

The proposed technological solution must consider the following requirements:

  • Metallurgical innocuousness in the Copper/Molybdenum concentration process and its process parameters (pH, ORP, %Rec, etc).
  • Operational compatibility with the recovered water transport system.
  • Minimum maintainability requirements and Heavy Duty constructability characteristics in the case of physical equipment.
  • Real-time and on-line data handling in case of monitoring solutions.
  • It is desirable, but not exclusive, the application of analytical technologies, artificial intelligence or similar in cases of preventive maintenance
  • Comply with Sierra Gorda SCM’s security and communications standards.

Minimize or inhibit salt incrustation in recovered water transportation system

  • Reduced water availability in the plant due to the loss of efficiency in the pumping system due to the loss of pipe diameter.
  • Higher operation and maintenance costs.

On a daily basis (progressive over time).

Inspections and technical tests are carried out to monitor the condition and detect anomalies in the reclaimed water transport system.

No new technologies have been tested.

Do you have questions on the challenge application process?

If you need more information or have any doubts/questions regarding the challenge, please enter the mining company Q&A section in our platform.