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Smelting Plant Optimization

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The Challenge

Understanding and resolving a number of plant bottlenecks.

The Arena Solution

Combining thermodynamic modelling (Factsage®), heat and mass balance modelling (Metsim®) and now dynamic simulation (Arena), the Extractive Metallurgy Group at XPS can be considered a leader in metallurgical modelling. Arena simulation software is well adapted to the modelling of a complete metallurgical plant having a number of complex and interacting operations. All types of unit operations can be incorporated into the model. This can range, for example, from systems for materials handling - feed conveyors, slurry pumping or crane and ladle transfers - to individual unit operations such as a high temperature smelting furnace, a leach tank or a milling operation.

Results

  • Better understanding of metallurgical process operations
  • Perform what-if analysis before implementing process changes
  • Effective presentation and interpretation of results

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Background

Dynamic simulation is the time-based simulation of an operating plant or process such as a copper smelter. Computer-based dynamic simulation has become an increasingly power tool over the last two decades aimed at optimization of complex industrial operations. The ability to dynamically simulate a given plant or process over time, such as a week or a year of operation including running times and potential downtimes, can provide invaluable insight to the understanding of a plant. This can help in projects to increase throughput, plant de-bottlenecking exercises, or in brownfield expansion projects (discrete event modelling).