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Title: IMPROVING ENERGY EFFICIENCY VIA OPTIMIZED CHARGE MOTION AND SLURRY FLOW IN PLANT SCALE SAG MILLS

Abstract

The U.S. mining industry operates approximately 80 semi-autogenesis grinding mills (SAG) throughout the United States. Depending on the mill size the SAG mills draws between 2 MW and 17 MW. The product from the SAG mill is further reduced in size using pebble crushers and ball mills. Hence, typical gold or copper ore requires between 2.0 and 7.5 kWh per ton of energy to reduce the particle size. Considering a typical mining operation processes 10,000 to 100,000 tons per day the energy expenditure in grinding is 50 percent of the cost of production of the metal. A research team from the University of Utah is working to make inroads into saving energy in these SAG mills. In 2003, Industries of the Future Program of the Department of Energy tasked the University of Utah team to build a partnership between the University and the mining industry for the specific purpose of reducing energy consumption in SAG mills. A partnership was formed with Cortez Gold Mines, Kennecott Utah Copper Corporation, Process Engineering Resources Inc. and others. In the current project, Cortez Gold Mines played a key role in facilitating the 26-ft SAG mill at Cortez as a test mill for this study.more » According to plant personnel, there were a number of unscheduled shut downs to repair broken liners and the mill throughput fluctuated depending on ore type. The University team had two softwares, Millsoft and FlowMod to tackle the problem. Millsoft is capable of simulating the motion of charge in the mill. FlowMod calculates the slurry flow through the grate and pulp lifters. Based on this data the two models were fine-tuned to fit the Cortez SAG will. In the summer of 2004 a new design of shell lifters were presented to Cortez and in September 2004 these lifters were installed in the SAG mill. By December 2004 Cortez Mines realized that the SAG mill is drawing approximately 236-kW less power than before while maintaining the same level of production. In the first month there was extreme cycling and operators had to learn more. Now the power consumption is 0.3-1.3 kWh/ton lower than before. The actual SAG mill power draw is 230-370 kW lower. Mill runs 1 rpm lesser in speed on the average. The re-circulation to the cone crusher is reduced by 1-10%, which means more efficient grinding of critical size material is taking place in the mill. All of the savings have resulted in reduction of operating cost be about $0.023-$0.048/ ton.« less

Authors:
; ; ;
Publication Date:
Research Org.:
University of Utah
Sponsoring Org.:
USDOE
OSTI Identifier:
861643
DOE Contract Number:
FC26-03NT41786
Resource Type:
Technical Report
Country of Publication:
United States
Language:
English
Subject:
32 ENERGY CONSERVATION, CONSUMPTION, AND UTILIZATION; MINERAL INDUSTRY; ORE PROCESSING; COMMINUTION; ENERGY CONSERVATION; COMPUTER-AIDED DESIGN; PROCESS CONTROL; PARTICLE SIZE

Citation Formats

Raj K. Rajamani, Sanjeeva Latchireddi, Sravan K. Prathy, and Trilokyanath Patra. IMPROVING ENERGY EFFICIENCY VIA OPTIMIZED CHARGE MOTION AND SLURRY FLOW IN PLANT SCALE SAG MILLS. United States: N. p., 2005. Web. doi:10.2172/861643.
Raj K. Rajamani, Sanjeeva Latchireddi, Sravan K. Prathy, & Trilokyanath Patra. IMPROVING ENERGY EFFICIENCY VIA OPTIMIZED CHARGE MOTION AND SLURRY FLOW IN PLANT SCALE SAG MILLS. United States. doi:10.2172/861643.
Raj K. Rajamani, Sanjeeva Latchireddi, Sravan K. Prathy, and Trilokyanath Patra. Thu . "IMPROVING ENERGY EFFICIENCY VIA OPTIMIZED CHARGE MOTION AND SLURRY FLOW IN PLANT SCALE SAG MILLS". United States. doi:10.2172/861643. https://www.osti.gov/servlets/purl/861643.
@article{osti_861643,
title = {IMPROVING ENERGY EFFICIENCY VIA OPTIMIZED CHARGE MOTION AND SLURRY FLOW IN PLANT SCALE SAG MILLS},
author = {Raj K. Rajamani and Sanjeeva Latchireddi and Sravan K. Prathy and Trilokyanath Patra},
abstractNote = {The U.S. mining industry operates approximately 80 semi-autogenesis grinding mills (SAG) throughout the United States. Depending on the mill size the SAG mills draws between 2 MW and 17 MW. The product from the SAG mill is further reduced in size using pebble crushers and ball mills. Hence, typical gold or copper ore requires between 2.0 and 7.5 kWh per ton of energy to reduce the particle size. Considering a typical mining operation processes 10,000 to 100,000 tons per day the energy expenditure in grinding is 50 percent of the cost of production of the metal. A research team from the University of Utah is working to make inroads into saving energy in these SAG mills. In 2003, Industries of the Future Program of the Department of Energy tasked the University of Utah team to build a partnership between the University and the mining industry for the specific purpose of reducing energy consumption in SAG mills. A partnership was formed with Cortez Gold Mines, Kennecott Utah Copper Corporation, Process Engineering Resources Inc. and others. In the current project, Cortez Gold Mines played a key role in facilitating the 26-ft SAG mill at Cortez as a test mill for this study. According to plant personnel, there were a number of unscheduled shut downs to repair broken liners and the mill throughput fluctuated depending on ore type. The University team had two softwares, Millsoft and FlowMod to tackle the problem. Millsoft is capable of simulating the motion of charge in the mill. FlowMod calculates the slurry flow through the grate and pulp lifters. Based on this data the two models were fine-tuned to fit the Cortez SAG will. In the summer of 2004 a new design of shell lifters were presented to Cortez and in September 2004 these lifters were installed in the SAG mill. By December 2004 Cortez Mines realized that the SAG mill is drawing approximately 236-kW less power than before while maintaining the same level of production. In the first month there was extreme cycling and operators had to learn more. Now the power consumption is 0.3-1.3 kWh/ton lower than before. The actual SAG mill power draw is 230-370 kW lower. Mill runs 1 rpm lesser in speed on the average. The re-circulation to the cone crusher is reduced by 1-10%, which means more efficient grinding of critical size material is taking place in the mill. All of the savings have resulted in reduction of operating cost be about $0.023-$0.048/ ton.},
doi = {10.2172/861643},
journal = {},
number = ,
volume = ,
place = {United States},
year = {Thu Dec 01 00:00:00 EST 2005},
month = {Thu Dec 01 00:00:00 EST 2005}
}

Technical Report:

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  • The U.S. mining industry operates approximately 80 semi-autogenesis grinding mills (SAG) throughout the United States. Depending on the mill size the SAG mills draws between 2 MW and 17 MW. The product from the SAG mill is further reduced in size using pebble crushers and ball mills. Hence, typical gold or copper ore requires between 2.0 and 7.5 kWh per ton of energy to reduce the particle size. Considering a typical mining operation processes 10,000 to 100,000 tons per day the energy expenditure in grinding is 50 percent of the cost of production of the metal. A research team frommore » the University of Utah is working to make inroads into saving energy in these SAG mills. In 2003, Industries of the Future Program of the Department of Energy tasked the University of Utah team to build a partnership between the University and the mining industry for the specific purpose of reducing energy consumption in SAG mills. A partnership was formed with Cortez Gold Mines, Kennecott Utah Copper Corporation, Process Engineering Resources Inc. and others. In the current project, Cortez Gold Mines played a key role in facilitating the 26-ft SAG mill at Cortez as a test mill for this study. According to plant personnel, there were a number of unscheduled shut downs to repair broken liners and the mill throughput fluctuated depending on ore type. The University team had two softwares, Millsoft and FlowMod to tackle the problem. Millsoft is capable of simulating the motion of charge in the mill. FlowMod calculates the slurry flow through the grate and pulp lifters. Based on this data the two models were fine-tuned to fit the Cortez SAG will. In the summer of 2004 a new design of shell lifters were presented to Cortez and in September 2004 these lifters were installed in the SAG mill. By December 2004 Cortez Mines realized that the SAG mill is drawing approximately 236-kW less power than before while maintaining the same level of production. In the first month there was extreme cycling and operators had to learn more. Now the power consumption is 0.3-1.3 kWh/ton lower than before. The actual SAG mill power draw is 230-370 kW lower. Mill runs 1 rpm lesser in speed on the average. The re-circulation to the cone crusher is reduced by 1-10%, which means more efficient grinding of critical size material is taking place in the mill. All of the savings have resulted in reduction of operating cost be about $0.023-$0.048/ ton.« less
  • A research team from the University of Utah is working to make inroads into saving energy in these SAG mills. In 2003, Industries of the Future Program of the Department of Energy tasked the University of Utah team to build a partnership between the University and the mining industry for the specific purpose of reducing energy consumption in SAG mills. A partnership was formed with Cortez Gold Mines, Kennecott Utah Copper Corporation, Process Engineering Resources Inc. and Outokumpu Technology. In the current project, Cortez Gold Mines played a key role in facilitating the 26-ft SAG mill at Cortez as amore » test mill for this study. According to plant personnel, there were a number of unscheduled shut downs to repair broken liners and the mill throughput fluctuated depending on ore type. The University team had two softwares, Millsoft and FlowMod to tackle the problem. Millsoft is capable of simulating the motion of charge in the mill. FlowMod calculates the slurry flow through the grate and pulp lifters. Based on this data the two models were fine-tuned to fit the Cortez SAG will. In the summer of 2004 a new design of shell lifters were presented to Cortez and in September 2004 these lifters were installed in the SAG mill. By December 2004 Cortez Mines realized that the SAG mill is drawing approximately 236-kW less power than before while maintaining the same level of production. In the first month there was extreme cycling and operators had to learn more. Now the power consumption is 0.3-1.3 kWh/ton lower than before. The actual SAG mill power draw is 230-370 kW lower. Mill runs 1 rpm lesser in speed on the average. The recirculation to the cone crusher is reduced by 1-10%, which means more efficient grinding of critical size material is taking place in the mill. All of the savings have resulted in reduction of operating cost be about $0.023-$0.048/ ton. After completing the shell lifter design, the pulp lifter design was taken up. Through a series of mill surveys and model calculations it was figured that the radial pulp lifter installed on the mill had less than optimum discharge capacity. A number of alternative designs were evaluated. The final choice was the Turbo Pulp Lifter for which Outukumpu Technology, Centennial, Colorado had filed a patent. After installation of the pulp lifter a 22% increase in throughput rate from 344 stph to 421 stph was realized. A 35% decrease in the SAG mill power draw from 3,908 HP to 2,526 HP (2,915 kW to 1,884 kW) was recorded. This equates to a 47% decrease in SAG unit energy consumption from 8.98 kWh/ton to 4.74 kWh/ton. A 11% decrease in SAG mill speed was observed indicating optimized ball strikes. Also, the ball chip generation from the SAG mill was reduced considerably. Further more, a 7% decrease in ball mill power draw from 4,843 HP to 4,491 HP (3,613 kW to 3,350 kW) was observed. This equates to a 24% decrease in ball mill unit energy consumption from 11.13 kWh/ton to 8.43 kWh/ton.« less
  • A research team from the University of Utah is working to make inroads into saving energy in these SAG mills. In 2003, Industries of the Future Program of the Department of Energy tasked the University of Utah team to build a partnership between the University and the mining industry for the specific purpose of reducing energy consumption in SAG mills. A partnership was formed with Cortez Gold Mines, Outokumpu Technology, Kennecott Utah Copper Corporation, and Process Engineering Resources Inc. At Cortez Gold Operations the shell and pulp lifters of the semiautogenous grinding mill was redesigned. The redesigned shell lifter hasmore » been in operation for over three years and the redesigned pulp lifter has been in operation for over nine months now. This report summarizes the dramatic reductions in energy consumption. Even though the energy reductions are very large, it is safe to say that a 20% minimum reduction would be achieved in any future installations of this technology.« less
  • The project began under a corporative agreement between Mack Trucks, Inc and the Department of Energy starting from September 1, 2005. The major objective of the four year project is to demonstrate a 10% efficiency gain by operating a Volvo 13 Litre heavy-duty diesel engine at a constant or narrow speed and coupled to a continuously variable transmission. The simulation work on the Constant Speed Engine started on October 1st. The initial simulations are aimed to give a basic engine model for the VTEC vehicle simulations. Compressor and turbine maps are based upon existing maps and/or qualified, realistic estimations. Themore » reference engine is a MD 13 US07 475 Hp. Phase I was completed in May 2006 which determined that an increase in fuel efficiency for the engine of 10.5% over the OICA cycle, and 8.2% over a road cycle was possible. The net increase in fuel efficiency would be 5% when coupled to a CVT and operated over simulated highway conditions. In Phase II an economic analysis was performed on the engine with turbocompound (TC) and a Continuously Variable Transmission (CVT). The system was analyzed to determine the payback time needed for the added cost of the TC and CVT system. The analysis was performed by considering two different production scenarios of 10,000 and 60,000 units annually. The cost estimate includes the turbocharger, the turbocompound unit, the interstage duct diffuser and installation details, the modifications necessary on the engine and the CVT. Even with the cheapest fuel and the lowest improvement, the pay back time is only slightly more than 12 months. A gear train is necessary between the engine crankshaft and turbocompound unit. This is considered to be relatively straight forward with no design problems.« less
  • This report presents results from the development and optimization of a reference commercialscale high-temperature electrolysis (HTE) plant for hydrogen production. The reference plant design is driven by a high-temperature helium-cooled reactor coupled to a direct Brayton power cycle. The reference design reactor power is 600 MWt, with a primary system pressure of 7.0 MPa, and reactor inlet and outlet fluid temperatures of 540° C and 900°C, respectively. The electrolysis unit used to produce hydrogen consists of 4.176 × 10 6 cells with a per-cell active area of 225 cm2. A nominal cell area-specific resistance, ASR, value of 0.4 Ohm•cm2 withmore » a current density of 0.25 A/cm2 was used, and isothermal boundary conditions were assumed. The optimized design for the reference hydrogen production plant operates at a system pressure of 5.0 MPa, and utilizes an air-sweep system to remove the excess oxygen that is evolved on the anode side of the electrolyzer. The inlet air for the air-sweep system is compressed to the system operating pressure of 5.0 MPa in a four-stage compressor with intercooling. The overall system thermal-to-hydrogen production efficiency (based on the low heating value of the produced hydrogen) is 49.07% at a hydrogen production rate of 2.45 kg/s with the high-temperature helium-cooled reactor concept. The information presented in this report is intended to establish an optimized design for the reference nuclear-driven HTE hydrogen production plant so that parameters can be compared with other hydrogen production methods and power cycles to evaluate relative performance characteristics and plant economics.« less