Production drilling and blasting in open pit mines has one mission – to separate the valuable minerals from the waste rock. Now these operations can be made significantly more efficient with a new device that keeps a track of the contents of the bench in real time.
Called OREalyzer, the device, which is integrated into the SmartROC D65 drill rig, pinpoints the location of the ore, analyzes its quality and identifies waste boundaries while drilling is in progress.
Olav Kvist, Product Portfolio Manager at Atlas Copco, says: “By knowing exactly where the ore is located, the mine can potentially get far better ore recovery. This means that mines can extract more value from the blasted material and increase the amount of sellable material in the bench.”
Furthermore, by processing more ore and less waste, the throughput time in the mill is increased. This saves energy and water and reduces the environmental footprint due to less loading and haulage per tonne. Log files are sent automatically to the mine office through the RRA (Rig Remote Access) option, enabling early decision-making on blast design as well as loading priorities. In addition, the OREalyzer reduces the need for personnel to collect and handle samples on the bench which increases safety.
The OREalyzer can be used with both DTH as well as RC drilling (Reverse Circulation) and integrates with “acQuire” production databases.
The OREalyzer will be available in two different versions, covering both production drilling and in-pit grade. Kvist continues: “The product strategy is one of empowering the local geologist with a new tool, turning the drill rig into a sensor. This will revolutionize the way mines create value.”
Epiroc operated under the trademark “Atlas Copco” prior to January 1, 2018.