International Journal of Mining and Mineral Engineering
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International Journal of Mining and Mineral Engineering (3 papers in press)
A mixed-integer linear programming model for the stockpiles blending problem in a nickel mine by Arlem Silva, Tatianna Beneteli, Luiz Silva, Gustavo Pessin, Thiago Euzébio, Luciano Perdigão Cota Abstract: This work addresses the problem of stockpiles blending in a nickel mine. In the literature, many studies address the ore blending problem in iron and coal mines; however, research on nickel mines is scarce. The pyrometallurgical process, used in nickel mines, requires better blend quality control, imposing some singularities in the mining process, such as stacking the ore extracted from the mining fronts in stockpiles. The stored ore is blended to feed the processing plant. The optimisation problem seeks to minimise the deviation from the total mass target, the deviations from the grade targets, and the number of used stockpiles. We propose a mixed-integer linear programming model to solve the problem. In the computational experiments, we use five real scenarios of a Brazilian nickel mine. The results show that the mathematical model implemented in solver finds optimal solutions in a few seconds, demonstrating the proposals accuracy as a decision support system. Keywords: open-pit mining; blending; stockpiles; mixed-integer linear programming model; decision support system. DOI: 10.1504/IJMME.2022.10048764
Frictional-thermal Fatigue of Cutting Tips of Roadheader Picks by Piotr Cheluszka, Stanislaw Mikula, Jaroslaw Mikula Abstract: In this article, we describe the nucleation and development of the failure of cutting picks caused by frictional-thermal fatigue in conjunction with other pick tip destructive processes. Guidelines have been formulated, the implementation of which will help to reduce the emergence and development of frictional-thermal fatigue. In this study, we present a constructional proposal of cutting picks with ring-type tips that allow for the implementation of water spraying in the cutting zone with simultaneous rotation of the picks around their longitudinal axis through a turbine system. The described structure of a cutting pick is characterized by a number of beneficial functional properties with particular emphasis on improving the resistance of the picks to frictional-thermal fatigue. This considerably increases the service life of the cutting tools thereby improving the efficiency of the machine during the mining of rock and other rock-like materials. Keywords: excavation; conical picks of mining machines; wear and tear; frictional-thermal fatigue mechanism; central water spraying system; modification of construction; improvement of durability; reducing the load on the cutting picks; lowering the energy consumption of rock mining;.
A COUNTRY-WIDE ANALYSIS OF MINERAL EXPLORATION IN SMALL-SCALE MINING by Ricardo Tichauer, Erbertt Barros, Giorgio De Tomi Abstract: Artisanal and small-scale mining (ASM) is an important source of work and income for communities all over the world. Despite its importance, artisanal and small-scale mines are often informal and poorly equipped, ignoring mining best practices and operating under significant risks associated with high geological uncertainty. This paper offers a diagnosis of the mineral exploration programs in small-scale mining. A matrix-based evaluation method available in recent research initiatives described in the literature was applied to 246 mines in all five regions of Brazil. The application of the matrix resulted in a national average index of 3.4 in a range that can vary from 2.0 to 10.0. The low index confirms the initial assumption that small-scale mining operates with little geological knowledge. This study underlines the importance of public policies and initiatives to disseminate best exploration practices in small-scale mining, promoting sustainability of small-scale mineral projects and socioeconomic development of communities around them. Keywords: small-scale mining; mineral exploration; geological uncertainty; risk management.