Designing for a reduced Carbon Footprint at Greenfield and Operating Comminution Plants

New comminution circuits design strategies are presented. The aim of the new strategies is to improve the overall efficiency of the comminution process and reduce the total energy consumption of a comminution circuit. The strategies described can be applied during the design of a greenfield comminution circuit and be applied to improve the performance and energy efficiency of an operating comminution circuit.

The energy efficient strategies can be summarized by:

1. Use of new technology to evaluate the potential for rejection of liberated gangue at coarse particle sizes.

2. A modified comminution strategy where more efficient grinding and crushing equipment is used to redistribute comminution energy and to minimize energy consumption as equipment power and embedded energy in media and wear materials. This strategy can provide the beneficial additional effect of a "tighter" size distribution more suitable for the following separation process.

3. A quantitative approach to the selection of target product size through thorough analysis of quantitative liberation data.

These factors can be combined to improve the performance of a comminution circuit by tailoring the design to suit better the properties of the orebody. This can significantly decrease the overall energy consumption and the resulting carbon footprint of the comminution circuit.