Heap Leach Circuit

Improved heap stability and optimized reagents

Heap Leach Circuit Optimization Application

Our Application consists of several machine learning models that support heap leach metallurgists and operators meet operational KPIs.

The Problems Faced When Heap Leaching

Heap Leaching is often preferred because of its relatively low cost, suitability to low rainfall climates and low-grade target mineral contents. The process is, however, prone to some challenges including:

  • High fines material reporting to the heap leach stacks, which can affect leaching efficiency and processes further downstream
  • Excessive moisture content which can limit the ability to reclaim heap leach tailings at maximum throughput
  • A lack of knowledge and visibility of the Heap material properties across different sections, which leads to inefficient irrigation, high acid consumption and lower recoveries

The BASF Solution

The BASF Intelligent Mine Heap Leach Optimization Application:

  1. Stabilizes the process by reducing p80 size reduction variability, optimizing particle size distribution with minimum fines generation and optimizing acid to fines ratio in the agglomeration unit operation.
  2. Increases heap deposition throughput maximizing reclaim equipment utilization.
  3. Maximizes metal recovery as well as mass transfer (reduces leach cycle times).
  4. Reduces acid consumption and localised flooding events.
  5. Reduces heap irrigation water consumption and pumping costs.
Knowing the material characteristics and quality of your Heap Leaching pads gives you the opportunity to increase your operational efficiency and maximise your leach solution grade by allowing you to make informed decisions about the feed sent to the processing plant.
Heap leach application

The BASF Mine Heap Leach Optimisation Application has been developed and refined across multiple projects and customer sites, resulting in an ‘out-of-the-box’ product that can be rapidly deployed and customised to deliver value within weeks.

The Value Gained from Optimization

The BASF Intelligent Mine Heap Leach Optimisation Application provides:

  • Cost efficiencies, lower wastage and OpEx savings on acid consumption and material handling
  • Higher metal recovery through to improved leaching kinetics by changing mine planning or blending
  • Reduced localised flooding events on leaching pads
  • Improved reclaimer efficiency and usage
  • Prevention of undesirable effects or fines contamination that will affect downstream processes

Value Chain Optimisation from Mine to Market

Powered and connected together by the brains.app platform, the Heap Leach Optimisation Application is one of a suite of real-time, Artificial Intelligence-driven, decision-making applications to optimize each process from mine to market.

Heap Leach App screenshot
brainsapp Heap Leach performance screen