Challenge

BHP

Conveyor systems clean up and increasing their continuity

Challenge

Conveyor systems clean up and increasing their continuity

Solutions are sought that allow for the cleaning of conveyor belts remotely, in such a way that people's exposure can be reduced, the efficiency of cleaning can be improved, and with this, operational continuity can be increased and/or the plant doesn’t need to be stopped for cleaning.

Aim and scope:
Solutions are sought that allow for the cleaning of conveyor belts remotely, in such a way that people’s exposure can be reduced, the efficiency of cleaning can be improved, and with this, operational continuity can be increased and/or the plant doesn’t need to be stopped for cleaning. Solutions will be considered at any stage of technological maturity.

Operation and processes involved:
Minera Escondida – Tailings Area.

Current situation:
Spillage of fine material due to jamming in the transfers, fine material due to return in the mobile and fixed conveyors, produced in the reclamation circuit, cause a great accumulation of material in the different critical points of the conveyor belt systems. This material must be removed in order to avoid damage to the equipment and stops in the process.

Consequences:
The consequences generated are: Daily cleaning requirements, difficulty in cleaning up spills at points that are difficult to access, repeated stops and loss of production, risk of accidents to people, damage to structures and elements of conveyor systems (belts, idlers, tail drums and heads).

Problem occurrence:
When the material to be reclaimed comes with high humidity, cleaning devices (scrapers) fail during operation of the reclaim line.

Current solution:
Daily manual cleaning with teams of 7 people and 1 supervisor. Use of hydrojet, supersucker and mini loader.

Proven technologies:
Minidozers and mini-loaders have been tested. These solutions presented low efficiency due to their limited capacity, difficulty of access and transfers to the points to intervene. The test with Miniveyor was not very effective because its capacity is limited and the humidity of the material does not allow an efficient removal of it. Operator exposure is virtually eliminated as this equipment is operated remotely.


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Challenge page

Supply Innovation BHP

aims to promote the development of projects between the Company and the Suppliers with an associative approach, where the design and construction of the solution for the “Challenge” detected by an area of the Operation is addressed jointly. In this way, the generated projects develop solutions that add value to the Company and the suppliers build capacities and competencies that translate in more and better business opportunities.

Expande program

The Open Innovation in Mining Program, Expande, is a public-private initiative designed and carried out by Fundación Chile. The purpose is to drive innovation and make possible a better future for global mining, promoting the mining ecosystem in Chile along with building a collaborative model that enables the best solutions for the high complexity challenges of mining today and tomorrow.