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Optimize Your Belt-Conveyor Systems

Apr 26, 2021

Belt-conveyor systems are the workhorses of a mining operation.  Regardless of the application, minimizing the cost per ton to move material without compromising safety, product integrity, and efficiency is accomplished by ensuring that your conveyor configuration is perfectly adapted and adjusted to its actual operational parameters.
Even if your conveyor system was perfectly designed and tuned at the moment of its installation, with changes in mine ownership, operating philosophies and maintenance practices, it is likely that many parameters are no longer the same as they were at the outset.  The tonnage or physical properties of the material transported may have changed over the years.  Various equipment and accessories may have been added or modified by several different engineering firms and suppliers.  As a result, your conveyor may operate at a non-optimal condition.
Developing a conveyor audit program is key to implement a configuration reset program aimed at reducing the operating costs and maximizing the overall mine productivity.  Trinum S.A. is a leader in belt conveyor engineering that offers such an auditing service to the mines of Quebec and Ontario.
To begin, their experts visit the site and thoroughly inspect all aspects of the conveyors.  If necessary, they use the best available technologies such as thermal imaging, alignment lasers or 3-D lasers.  Observing both the loaded and unloaded operation allows them to identify problems that, if not addressed and corrected, can lead to breakdowns, high maintenance costs or potential safety hazards.  Following the inspection, Trinum engineers will analyse the conveyors using the best numerical tools available and determine what the optimal conveyor configuration should be.  These analyses can include 3D- bulk flow simulation by DEM, structural validation by FEM and validation of the robustness and fitness for duty of the components:  Belt, pulleys, shafts, idler, bearing, etc.  Typically, the audit program will generate a series of recommendations on how to optimize the conveyors to ensure maximum productivity and reliability.  
Following the acquisition of the Detour Gold mine by Kirkland Lake Gold, Trinum was mandated to audit and optimize several of their conveyors.  Among the improvements implemented in 2020, we count: several chute redesign; addition of magnet, scale and sampler; correction of belt tracking issues, optimization of the ball mills and sag mills outflow; replacement of gravity take-up by hydraulic take-up.
If you believe that the reliability and performance of your conveyors can be improved, don’t hesitate to hire the experts who can guide you.


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