A consortium of world leaders has come together to commercialise a ‘one-stop-shop’ for collecting and analysing gold plant data in real-time – a process that will revolutionise the industry’s ability to measure circuit inventory and recovery in real time, move it into the digital world and whilst providing opportunity for full automation.
Earlier this month, METS Ignited Industry Growth Centre announced the consortium of Gold Fields, Orway IQ, CSIRO, Curtin University and Gekko Systems as recipients of the Tranche 4 Collaborative Project Funds. The METS Ignited funding will assist the development of a system to collect and analyse real-time gold reconciliations and automate gold processing plants by providing the technology, software, skills and expertise to the miners as an integrated package.
In a world-first, the project draws together a range of technologies and skill sets that are the first step to truly understanding what is happening in a gold production plant real time and will eventually lead to a fully autonomous gold plant.
METS Ignited CEO Adrian Beer has said the project funding is supporting the commercialisation of innovation developed in partnership with industry, research and Australia’s METS companies.
“The METS Ignited Collaborative Project Funds are a catalyst for industry collaboration to enable commercial pathways for Australian technology to deliver global results,” said Adrian Beer.
Gold Field’s Processing Projects Coordinator Matt Dixon said the value of this collaboration was having information available in real time to make decisions.
“The METS Ignited project is looking to integrate multiple technologies to achieve a step change in the automation and optimisation of gold processing. Recent innovations by CSIRO and Curtin University, in partnership with Gekko Systems are now making the potential to monitor gold in real time a reality. Gold Fields have chosen the Gruyere Gold Mine as the site to install and test these technologies. Combining the OLGA (OnLine Gold Analyser) and Carbon Scout with newly developed data capture and analytics technologies, aims to provide a step change to how we measure, monitor and optimise gold recovery. A world first project, creating a technological capability which does not yet exist anywhere else in the gold sector,” said Matt Dixon.
The project will address current difficulties in accounting for gold during production, lag times in assessing data and adapting procedures to maximise production from the data provided and the safety around a number of those procedures.
The ultimate aim is to have gold process and recovery data being analysed within minutes rather than days from anywhere in the world and for production to be adapted to reflect this data.
This round of METS Ignited collaborative funding is focused on analytics, automation and robotics in the mining industry with projects expected to have a global impact and to provide substantial benefits to the Australian METS sector.
Marketing Coordinator Gekko Systems
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METS Ignited Industry Growth Centre:
METS Ignited is the Industry Growth Centre - for Mining Equipment, Technology and Services and is funded by the Federal Government’s Department of Industry Science, Energy and Resources. Our goal is to accelerate the commercialisation of innovation in areas where Australia has a proven competitive advantage.
Gekko was founded in 1996 in regional Victoria, Australia. Gekko started by commercialising the InLine Pressure Jigs for continuous gravity separation and the InLine Leach Reactor for treatment of gold concentrates. Growing demand for energy-efficient devices spurred Gekko to re-invent and advance traditional processing flowsheets. Innovative modular designs, cutting edge technology development, elegant systems and processing analytics launched Gekko as a world technical leader in gold processing and low-energy mining solutions.
Orway IQ is a joint venture company established by Orway Mineral Consultants (OMC) and Process IQ Pty Ltd. The joint venture draws on the expertise of OMC with regards to comminution design, modelling and optimisation and Process IQ’s expertise in process control, automation and process instrumentation. The JV provides clients within the minerals processing industry with a consulting service, MillROC – Milling Remote Optimisation Consulting and Coaching – which applies process models and analysis to real-time plant data, the findings of which are communicated to the client to facilitate continual improvement.
Gold Fields is a globally diversified gold producer with nine operating mines in Australia, Peru, South Africa and West Africa (including the Asanko JV), as well as one project in Chile. Gold Fields has total attributable annual gold-equivalent production of 2.2Moz, attributable gold-equivalent Mineral Reserves of 51.3Moz and Mineral Resources of 115.7Moz.