Episode 3 | Handling Dilution in Underground Mining

Episode 3 | Handling Dilution in Underground Mining

The Mining Experience is a live podcast that invites professionals from the mining industry to discuss new technologies, address challenges, and share work experiences.

In this episode, we will discuss the importance of underground mining dilution, the possible causes of it, and its environmental impact.

We have the honor to host two special guests:

Mr. Yvan Dionne; President of the Company Promine inc., A mining and surveying software that serves over 100 clients in more than 10 countries. Promine also provides solutions for the geological exploration industry through its brand Progeox. Mr. Yvan is a respected individual in the mining industry and has an extensive experience in programming, mining engineering, and CAD based software. He also has experience in research as he worked at the Noranda Research Center in Pointe-Claire, Québec here in Canada. In his free time, he enjoys biking regardless of Québec’s weather.

Mr. Kilian Bao; President of DT Solutions Services, Master’s degree in Computer Engineering from the Joseph Fourier University in France, Expert in Artificial Intelligence, and specialist in Deep Learning. Since the last 20 years, Mr. Kilian Bao left his fingerprints in several multinational companies in China, France and Canada.

Episode 2 | Drones in Mining & Surveying

Episode 2 | Drones in Mining & Surveying

The Mining Experience is a live podcast that invites professionals from the mining industry to discuss new technologies, address challenges, and share work experiences.

In this episode, we will discuss the application of drones in the mining industry. Across the mining industry, technology applications have been taking over all aspects of mining. Drones play an important role when it comes to surveying, productivity, and health & safety. Our guests will discuss these aspects and how to start implementing this technology.

Guests:

Ramee Mossa; CEO and founder of TriStar. Drone designer and full stack web developer, Ramee has designed and developed advanced technology product prototypes including several high-performance drones, one of which is patent pending and constitutes the basis for TriStar’s product. Previous work includes software development, technology advisory roles within MNCs, and public policy advising with municipal governments.  

Andres Bayona; VP, Business development and co-founder of TriStar. He has worked as a business strategy and management consultant in North America, Latin America and Asia. He has extensive experience in regulatory matters, allowing him to navigate the changing regulatory landscape for drones.

Jonathan Aubertin; A graduate of Mining Engineering from McGill University and a Ph.D. in Geological Engineering. Jonathan has been involved with Morton Salt as a CO-OP student, where he also worked part-time. He currently works as a General Foreman over the fixed mine assets at Morton Salt Weeks Island mine, where he runs the hoisting plant and the underground mill. He aspires to be a Civil Engineering Professor at the Université du Québec in Montréal.

The importance of predicting dilution

The importance of predicting dilution

In a globally competitive market such as the mining sector, dilution estimation plays one of the most important roles, directly affecting the economy of the different projects. However, to understand why this estimation is so important, let’s first define the term technically.

Dilution is defined as the ore contamination throughout the mining process by the waste or material that is below the cutoff grade, hindering sometimes the recovery process, and thus increasing the waste volume. Dilution can be either planned or unplanned. Planned dilution refers to the waste or sterile that lies within the designed stope boundaries, while unplanned dilution alludes to the waste derived from the backfill outside the stope boundaries. (Clark, 1998)

According to Ebrahimi (2013) “it is common to assume a general dilution such as 5% for massive deposits and 10% for tabular shape deposits”, nevertheless, it is important to consider the features of each deposit that can affect the ore extraction altering the dilution percentage, consequently, affecting the extraction costs. Some of these features are:

  • Mining method.
  • Orebody shape.
  • Drill and blasting techniques.
  • Instability of the stope wall.
  • Equipment size.

However, the dilution does not only generate an economic impact, but it has also been demonstrated that has a direct impact on the increase of the ecological footprint in mining operations. This is due to the dilution underestimation, because if calculations are not accurate more material can be considered as waste, which subsequently, must be stored in a tailings pond on the surface and without an adequate treatment, acid mine drainage can be caused.

Therefore, an action plan for dilution control must identify in first instance the dilution source, to be able to predict and control it with the appropriate tools, thus significantly reduce the mining losses and increase the profitability of mining operations.

References

Clark, L. M. (1998). Minimizing dilution in open stope mining with a focus on stope design and narrow

vein longhole blasting (Master’s thesis, University of British Columbia, 1998) (pp. 4-5). Vancouver:

University of British Columbia. doi:10.14288/1.0081111

Ebrahimi, A., & Eng, P. (2013, August). The importance of dilution factor for open pit mining projects.

In Proceedings of the 23rd World Mining Congress.

Predicting Underground Mining Dilution with AI | Tip of the Month

Predicting Underground Mining Dilution with AI | Tip of the Month

“SmartDIL is a new tool that uses artificial intelligence to analyze large amounts of data, make multiple predictions and give the best solution to predict and control dilution in underground mining. This will help mines lower their costs and become more profitable with this easy-to-use artificial intelligence dilution tool. SmartDIL takes on one of the biggest problems faced in the mining industry and will adapt to each underground mines situation. “