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Reduction of plugging in primary crushing

Faena: Centinela/El Tesoro Mine Challenge

Deadline 13/01/2023

Closing Time 4:00 pm

At Minera Centinela / El Tesoro the ore that feeds the primary crusher is of the exotic type with a high content of fines and clays, which results in a ROM (run of mine) feed grain size curve of 80% under 1 inch. In addition to the above, when the mineral has a humidity of more than 5.5%, the crusher is jammed as a result of the adherence to the walls of the feed hopper and compaction of the material, generating suspended load. In addition to the above, the material entering the crusher chamber adheres to the walls causing restrictions in the discharge flow. Both conditions generate operational discontinuity, reduced plant performance, risky conditions for the people in charge of cleaning, and damage to the facilities.

The objective of this challenge is to identify technological solutions, products or systems that allow reducing of plugging and residence times of the ore in primary crushing.

  • Minimal operational interference for the installation, operation and maintenance of the components.
  • Minimal or no presence of people in the clearing tasks.
  • Robustness and heavy duty characteristics to resist humidity conditions, particulate material, material projection, adverse weather conditions, low visibility, among others.
  • Take into consideration the availability of space and presence of obstacles in the plant layout (Annex 1: Primary Crushing Plant Layout).
  • In the case of reagents for the reduction of adherence or cohesion of particles, it must be considered that they are innocuous to subsequent processes.
  • Maturity level of the solutions must be greater than or equal to TRL 5 (prototype validated in complex or relevant environment).

A rock breaker is available to help push the load and reduce oversize.

  • Crushing plant throughput (ktpd).
  • Number of pluggings per unit of time.
  • Presence and exposure of workers in unplugging and cleaning tasks.
  • Plant shutdown times for fine material unplugging and cleaning tasks.
  • Running coefficient.

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