Eco-Efficient Comminution in Mining Industry: Techno-Economic Aspects and Challenges

Mining industry has been the cornerstone of human civilization and is directly and indirectly accounted for up to 45% of the global economy. The industry is an energy intensive one which directly consumes 6-7% of total world energy, from which almost half goes for comminution. Furthermore, it is estimated that mining is responsible for consuming 6-8 Bm3 of fresh water. Accordingly, the industry faces different challenges including improving process and resource efficiency, access to energy and water, as well as environmental issues regarding carbon footprint as well as water and land contaminations and social license to operate. Therefore, it is highly appreciated to invent and develop machineries and processes that help overcoming the challenges.

Since considerable amount of energy is consumed in comminution and the energy per ton of product increases as deeper and more competent reserves are brought into operations with related environmental, economic and political aspects, there is a serious need to design and operate the future commination plants eco-efficiently. Moving towards “Green Economy” requires optimal usage of resources, including raw materials, energy and water.

Accordingly, a series of seminars/webinars is prepared and presented to educate/train interested personnel within mining industry to understand the importance of raw materials and their uses, the future needs for raw materials, in particular with respect to green economy, as well as importance of the comminution processes with respect to comminution energy consumption, comminution tests and related procedures, energy calculations in comminution, selecting and sizing comminution plants, especial focus on dry comminution using staged crushing and vertical roller mill (VRM) and finally how to run a survey in comminution plant to improve productivity, etc. That educational packages will help participants for better understanding of mining industry and related challenges, comminution technologies and flowsheets respecting resource efficiency with special focus on dry comminution, as well as the needs for improving productivity in plant practices towards “Green Economy”.

The webinars/seminars are designed in harmony with “Process Development of Eco-Efficient Dry Comminution” project, supported by European Innovation Technology for Raw Materials (EIT-RawMats) through a collaborative European consortium consists of Northland OreTech (Sweden), Sandvik SRP (Sweden), EraMet Idea (France) Geological Survey of Finland (GTK-Finland), Boliden Mineral (Sweden) and Loesche (Germany).

Hamid-Reza Manouchehri (Ph.D)
Northland OreTech AB,
Adjunct Professor UBC