It was recently announced that Escondida in Chile, the world’s largest copper mine, will invest US$180 million to revamp an old concentrator plant. The plant has a processing capacity of some 100 000t/d. Los Colorados was the first concentrator plant used by Escondida to begin operations back in 1990, and the current project involves the repair of this facility, which was shut down earlier this year.
Escondida has three concentrator plants and once they are all up and running, operating simultaneously, the mine expects to produce 1.2 million tonnes of copper per year for the next ten years. In 2015, the mine produced 1.15 million tonnes of copper.
According to the company, this initiative is important in its long-term strategy, as it will increase the processing capacity for Escondida considerably and will help to compensate for the decline in ore grade to sustain production levels. “With the extension of the Los Colorados plant, Escondida will have all the necessary elements to fully take advantage of its mineral resources in a sustainable manner,” said Hilmar Rode, the mine’s president.
Reinvesting in your plant is a good way of expanding production and extending the mining phase of operations at a mine. It is a very important part of plant management.
Yet it is important to have the correct governance in place to ensure that the reinvestment will be fruitful. You need to know whether the reserves are there to make the mine sustainable, as well as feature in all the other elements in the Total Life of Mine to ascertain whether you should reinvest or not.
xMMP (exploration, Mining & Minerals Processing) is a mining “ERP” solution that covers the Total Life of Mine (‘LOM’). Managing mineral rights (tenements) claims, exploration, drilling, EPCM for the development phase, actual mining, stockpiles, plant, shipping and dispatching all the way to mine rehabilitation.
All of these aspects form part of the metrics at your disposal when you have implemented proper plant management tools. Comprehensive plant management includes using all the tools available to you and to know how to track the status of the plant.
The xMMP approach provides for real time integration from PLC/SCADA Historian plant systems into Ax PAM. The PAM calculation engine computes key flow sheet parameters and provides values for lockup, recovery, stockpile blending, etc.
Integrated laboratories (Ax LIMS) provides visibility and immediate availability of sample results after QA/QC.
Production plans flow “down” while actual progress information flows “up”. Further capabilities support costing and adjustments are allowed with full audit trails of who did what and when. So all in all: it’s AMIRA P754 compliant.
Resolve Immix’s Dynamics xMMP solution is a mining ERP solution that covers the Total Life of Mine, including the crucial element of plant management. We will help you to take care of plant management and extract the best out of your business, for the Total Life of Mine!