Decision Support System for Hydrometallurgical Processing

Tejeda, G.; Reyes, F.; Karelovic, P.; Romero, F.; Cipriano, A; Herrera M.N.

Keywords: Heap Leaching, modeling, decision support,


As one of the copper recovery processes, hydrometallurgy has gain impact due to its ability to process ore with average low grades at competitive prices compared with other metallurgical processes. Among hydrometallurgical processes the leaching stage, a process that is characterized by its significant temporal and spatial scale of operation, is critical. In spite of extensive developments in instrumentation in pyrometullurgical and concentrators plants,developments in heap leaching instrumentation has not reached the required level for a fully automated control system and furthermore for a stable operation. Computational tools, suchus dynamic simulators, can help operators achieve the best performance of the heap usingthe available instrumentation. This paper presents the development and implementation of an integrated dynamic simulator and a decision support system (DSS) for hydrometallurgicalprocesses with emphasis in heap leaching process. The dynamic simulator uses two dimensionalmodels of fluid transport, transport of solutes and dissolution of copper in the leaching heap,to analyse the effects produced in the variables of interest, such as the consumption of acid,copper concentration in the PLS (Pregnant Leach Solution) and leaching times. The DSS, whichis connected to the real time plant information system, gathers the information by sensors andlaboratory analyses to perform an automatic on-line parameter estimation of the process andmakes predictions to recommend to the operator both curing and leaching rates. Results showthat the DSS achieves the identification and prediction with less than 6% of error, allowing themetallurgist to predict the leaching behaviour and take decisions with better information

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Fecha de publicación: 2014
Año de Inicio/Término: August 24-29
Página de inicio: 10664
Página final: 10669
Idioma: Ingles

978-3-902823-62-5/2014 © IFAC10664