Tuesday, 28 September 2010

A new revolution in comminution?

There is interesting news on MEI Online today of two new autogenous mills at Boliden’s Aitik concentrator in Sweden. These 11.6m diameter mills are powered by 22.5 megawatt ABB motors, the most powerful ever built.

How big can mills and drives get? Would there be any advantages to going even bigger? I am not a comminution expert, but I would really like the views of those who are.

In my posting of 4th May I sensed a new revolution in comminution technology, which I also remarked upon in my summing up at Comminution ’10.

In another MEI Online item, Elizabeth Lewis-Gray, Managing Director of Gekko Systems in Australia states that the education of company directors is essential to assist in the acceleration of new comminution strategies for the mining industry. “Many senior people in the industry, especially those without a technical background, are unaware of the significant impact of different grinding and crushing strategies on carbon footprint and operating costs.”

There is certainly a lot going on in comminution at the moment and this is reflected in the flying start to Comminution ’12, which will be held in Cape Town in April 2012. Already major sponsors Starkey & Associates Inc., Magotteaux, JKTech and Maelgwyn Mineral Services are on board, with many more expressing interest. Papers presented at the conference will feed into a special issue of Minerals Engineering.  The special issue of Comminution '10 is scheduled for Volume 24 Numbers 3-4 in March 2011 and will contain some outstanding state-of-the-art papers.

1 comment:

  1. Great mills and process that is fully autogenous, so no overhead of grinding media. Gravity feed is used between the two stages of milling. The plant also uses in-pit crushing and ore conveying to dramatically reduce ore transport costs. A shining example of eco-efficient comminution!

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