Rapid and accurate data acquisition in moisture measurement enhances process control, increases resource value, and reduces operating costs. With the real time compositional data provided, plants can achieve consistent product quality.
Mining and mineral processing companies have identified accurate moisture measurement as one of the ways through which they can produce ore of superior quality and increase revenue. Moisture measuring sensors with real time and continuous monitoring capabilities have simplified this process in ways that were once considered barely credible just a few years ago. Now, mines are able to ascertain the properties of material before processing, as accurately as the technology can allow.
African Mining Brief has identified common features in moisture sensors that OEMs have supplied to some mine operators in Africa. As standard, the products have real-time data sensing, data collection, and data analysis and interpretation capabilities. Through sensors with these features, end-users benefit in a number of ways, mainly proactive control, continuous measurement and accuracy.
- Proactive control and measurement
Data gathered from accurate moisture measurement can facilitate better product control and preparation for further processing. For instance, in copper mineral processing, a series of moisture measurements are needed at stages such as leaching, re-leaching, post-leaching, at the outlet of the filters, before transfer into furnaces, and prior to loading. For instance in coal mining, it gives plant personnel proactive control over mineral processing, as it provides timely information on moisture quality variability regularly. Mining companies can measure, control quality variability in processing operations.
- Continuous measurement
In a bid to maintain quality of their product, mining companies adjust moisture continuously, which can significantly reduce treatment costs. With accurate data, the process can be more effective. A fine balance is needed in terms of moisture content. Both extremes can reduce the reduce quality of the product. For example, minor variations in moisture content can result in clumping, which can affect quality. On the other hand, over drying can result in excess dust and poor grade product.
Constant measurement is vital in the management of the drying process, which can significantly reduce treatment costs. Treatment has been cited as one of the biggest expenses in mineral processing.
- Accurate, with minimal margin for error
With real-time moisture analysis systems, which eliminate the laborious task of manual sample preparation and analysis for process control, result in costly sampling errors. The margin for sampling error is very slim. Through accurate data, a mine is able to seek practical ways of boosting treatment in situations where material quality is variable.
Just like any other equipment, a moisture sensor is as effective as its installation. For effective moisture measurement, sensors should be installed in strategic areas throughout the process, for instance, over the conveyor before the final crusher, or at the exit of the final crusher.
All in all, rapid and accurate data acquisition in moisture measurement enhances process control, increases resource value, and reduces operating cost. With the real time compositional data provided, plants can achieve consistent product quality.