A critique of selective mining unit sizing at Century Mine to optimise productivity with dilution

Smith, C. B., Nehring, M. and Bosompem, M. K. (2014) A critique of selective mining unit sizing at Century Mine to optimise productivity with dilution. Journal of Research Projects Review, 3 1: 63-68.

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Name Description MIMEType Size Downloads
Author Smith, C. B.
Nehring, M.
Bosompem, M. K.
Title A critique of selective mining unit sizing at Century Mine to optimise productivity with dilution
Journal name Journal of Research Projects Review
ISSN 2203-529X
Publication date 2014
Sub-type Article (original research)
Open Access Status
Volume 3
Issue 1
Start page 63
End page 68
Total pages 6
Editor Paul Hagan
Place of publication Carlton, VIC, Australia
Publisher The Australasian Institute of Mining and Metallurgy
Collection year 2015
Language eng
Formatted abstract
The mining industry of the modern era is at a fever pitch with innovation driven by the motivation to keep sales margins high amidst an ever-volatile commodities market. Autonomous mining, hybrid ore mining methods and increasingly larger and more mobile machinery continue to have a greater impetus than in the past. Amidst this flourishing innovation, the underlying principle of mining remains true; an operation is running at its most optimal point when it can attain the highest net present value possible from the in situ ore within its lease boundary. There are numerous drivers that stipulate the discounted cash flow of an operation. Getting swept up in, and fixating on, just a select few of these drivers, is a critical flaw in some aspects of modern mine planning because other important value drivers can be undermined and significantly compromised.

This paper acknowledges and focuses on the selective mining unit (SMU) sizing selection at Century Mine in far north-west Queensland to demonstrate that an intricate optimisation can be achieved between all key value adding drivers in a mining project. Presently, the mine as an operation is faced with numerous challenges; not only must the site remain profitable throughout a trough in the industry, it must also ensure that logistical challenges such as ore stockpiling are acted on before the situation turns dire. Appropriate SMU sizing is crucial as it stipulates the selectivity of ore excavation, and in turn impacts the extraction rate of this ore. Downstream effects of this process ultimately tie in the whole operation with the SMU size selected. This optimisation study aims to elucidate an SMU size that simultaneously maximises the discounted cash value and improves the ore stockpiling of the open pit base metals operation. It will be shown that net present value improvements up to 1 per cent over a 30 month period are achievable, and run-ofmine stockpiles can be improved by as much as 1400 t/day. Furthermore the project highlights that there is a potential to improve the discounted cashflow of other surface hardrock mines, by fixating on the selection of an appropriate SMU size for the operation in subject.
Q-Index Code C1
Q-Index Status Confirmed Code
Institutional Status UQ

Document type: Journal Article
Sub-type: Article (original research)
Collections: School of Mechanical & Mining Engineering Publications
Official 2015 Collection
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Created: Tue, 15 Apr 2014, 10:08:52 EST by Katie Gollschewski on behalf of School of Mechanical and Mining Engineering