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EVOLUTION OF SAG SHELL

DESIGN & THE INTRODUCTION


OF THE SKIP ROW DESIGN
CONCEPT
Paul Toor, Metso Australia

Morne Swart, Harmony Gold


Håkan Ståhlbröst, Metso Sweden
Presentation Summary
- Introduction

- SAG Lining Evolution: Hi-Hi -> Wide Space Design

- Skip Row Design

- Case Study

- Future Work

- Conclusions

2 © Metso September 2017 Metplant The Evolution of SAG Shell Design.


Presentation Summary
- Case Study 3 -> Harmony Gold Hidden Valley, 34’ SAG, SSS, Circuit Bottle Neck.

• Liner Cost Reduction,

• Reduced reline time,

• Reduce shutdown frequency,

• Improved trajectories,

• Improved charge dynamics (DEM),

• Improved mill performance (tph, kw, p80)

3 • Economics.
© Metso September 2017 Metplant The Evolution of SAG Shell Design.
Introduction
Thus through improved SAG shell lining design and optimisation it is
possible to;

1. Reduce Operating Costs (Liner, Media, Power),

2. Reduce Plant Downtime (Both Frequency & Duration).

3. Improve Mill Performance (tph, kW, p80),

4 © Metso
Drill Hole Patterns

- SAG mills typically have a prearranged drill


patterns of 2* Diameter (2D) or similar such as
2D-2, 2D-4.

- For example a 24 ft. mill with a 2D arrangement


would have 48 bolt holes per ring.

5 © Metso
Hi- Hi Designs

- Each lifter being bolted to the mill shell and each


plate being held in place by the adjacent lifters.
2D arrangement

- Lifters typically having aggressive face angles


which could be as low as 5-9 degrees

- Lifters susceptible to packing.

6 © Metso
Hi-Lo Designs

- Each lifter being bolted to the mill shell and each plate being
held in place by the adjacent lifters. 2D arrangement

- Lifters typically having aggressive face angles


which could be as low as 5-9 degrees

- Packing occurs up to the low lifter height.

- Alternate relines, “Hi for Lo”

- 48 lifters for 24 ft Mill with 2D Bolt Arrangement

- 196 liner pieces for 24ft mill with two rings.


7 © Metso
Hi-Lo Designs

- Utilised due to weight restrictions.

- Extended plate life due to packing.

8 © Metso
Hi-Lo Designs

- Frequent relines,

- Extended reline time,

- Aggressive angles required due to limited spacing,

- Mill operating variability,

- Reduction in mill volume and power,

- Liner life variability.

9 © Metso
Top Hat Designs

- Integrated Plate & Lifter,

- Reduction of No. of Lifters by 33%. 4/3D

- 32 Lifters for 24 ft Mill with 2D arrangement,

- Reduced lifters allow for a reduced release angle,

- Only “Hi” Lifters,

- Reduction in Lifters possible due to sequencing


of Liner bolt holes, centre & offset.

10 © Metso
Top Hat Designs

11 © Metso
Top Hat Designs

- 66% reduction in liner pieces


• 24’ example192 down to 64.

- Designed to operate without packing


• (larger release angles),

- More predictable and consistent mill operation,

- Increased mill volume and power (~5%)

- Typically maximum lifter heights of ~300mm.


• Any higher and packing may occur

12 © Metso
Large Diameter SAG Mill Liner Designs

As SAG mills increased in diameter larger


lifter bars were required to obtain a
reasonable life.

However ,for a fixed lifter width, any


increase in lifter height can only be achieved
with an increase in the lifter release angle

13 © Metso
Large Diameter SAG Mill Liner Designs
This had two negative consequences;

1. Packing was commonly observed resulting in reduced throughput,

2. Excessive ball on liner hits due to the aggressive face angle which
either;
• Resulted in reduced mill speed and consequently reduced
throughput
• Caused liner failure and or accelerated wear.

14 © Metso
Large Diameter SAG Mill Liner Designs

Increasingly large SAG mill shell liner designs abandoned 2D & 4/3D liner designs opting
for 1D arrangements with wider lifter bars and lifter spacing allowing for reduced release
angles.

15 © Metso September 2017 Metplant The Evolution of SAG Shell Design.


Large Diameter SAG Mill Liner Designs
• Candelaria (36 foot): “Liner design progressed from 72 lifter design, with aggressive face angle, to 36 lifter
design with 35 degree face angle (less aggressive). Mill throughput increased by 15%.”

• Alumbrera(36 foot): “Three years of trials had been conducted to optimise lifter geometry. Liner
progression from 72 to 48 to 36 rows of lifter bars. Originally the SAG could not operate at speeds in
excess of 70% of critical because of impact on the shell. Operation at reduced speed resulted in low
power draw and reduced throughput.”

• Los Pelambres (36 foot): “SAG mill liner progression from 72 rows with 8 degree face angle to 36 rows
with less aggressive 30 degree face angle. Changes allowed for the mills to be operated safely at higher
steel loads without increased risk of liner damage. Increased power draw resulted in increased primary
mill throughput.”
Powell, M. S., Smit, I., Radsizewski, P., Cleary, P., Rattray, B., Eriksson, K. and Schaeffer, L. (2006). The selection and design of mill liners. In Kawatra, S . Komar (Ed.), Advances
in Comminution (pp. 331-376) Littleton, CO: Society for Mining, Metallurgy & Exploration

16 © Metso September 2017 Metplant The Evolution of SAG Shell Design.


Benefits of 1D Lining Designs

• A larger spacing allows for a reduced release angle ensuring the cataracting particles hit the
toe of the charge improving throughput and the service life simultaneously,

• Larger spacing eliminates the potential of packing, maximising the mill volume and improving
mill power,

• The larger lifters which are typical for 1D designs prolong the service life and reduce the
frequency of relines,

• Reduced pieces allow for shorter reline times,

• Improved charge dynamics were also suggested.


17 © Metso September 2017 Metplant The Evolution of SAG Shell Design.
Design Considerations

18 © Metso September 2017 Metplant The Evolution of SAG Shell Design.


Design Considerations
• Great care is required when increasing the lifter spacing as the plate is further exposed to
direct impacts,

• Increasing trend of 125mm Ball Size, Secondary Crusher Feed, Lower mill fillings and higher
Ball fillings

• Another issue is that increasing the lifter spacing generally requires the lifter height to also be
increased to afford greater protection to the plate. However, this may not be possible due to
weight restrictions dictated by the liner handler lifting capacity.

19 © Metso September 2017 Metplant The Evolution of SAG Shell Design.


Skip Row Design

• Use of PolyMet™ plate to virtually eliminate the risk of


cracking

• Use of steel or PolyMet for the lifter bar

• Increased plate thickness typically 120 or


140 mm

• Increased lifter height typically 350 mm plus

• Reduced liner weight by 40-60%.


20 © Metso September 2017 Metplant The Evolution of SAG Shell Design.
Skip Row Design Applications
• Larger SAG mills

• Pre-crushed and secondary crushed mill feed

• Packing is observed for 4/3D lifter configuration

• Higher operating speeds

• Larger ball sizes

• Increased ore variability

• Variable total mill filling.


21 © Metso September 2017 Metplant The Evolution of SAG Shell Design.
Case Study 3, Harmony Gold, Hidden Valley, PNG.
• SSS circuit

• 34’ Diameter

• Total Mill Filling ~ 26-30 %

• Hi-Lo Design

22 © Metso September 2017 Metplant The Evolution of SAG Shell Design.


Case Study 3 - Liner Piece Reduction
Hi-Lo Design Skip Row Design
• Halve the reline frequency
Liner Quantity Liner Quantity
Shell Liners Shell Liners
• 30% reduction in liner
FE Shell Lifter Bar Low 32 FE Shell Lifter Bar 30
pieces and reline time
FE Shell Lifter Bar High 32 Middle Shell Lifter Bar 30

• Reduced Liner Costs, FE Shell Liner 64 DE Shell Lifter Bar 30


DE Shell Liner 64 Shell Plates 90

DE Shell Lifter Bar Low 32 0

DE Shell Lifter Bar High 32


256 180

Difference 76
% Difference 30%
23 © Metso September 2017 Metplant The Evolution of SAG Shell Design.
Case Study 3 - Trial

24 © Metso September 2017 Metplant The Evolution of SAG Shell Design.


Case Study 3 - Trial
• End of Trial.
Skip Row Patch Trial Incumbent Hi-Lo

25 © Metso September 2017 Metplant The Evolution of SAG Shell Design.


Case Study 3 - Trial
• Trial verified that the Skip Row Design will be able to match the “Hi”
lifter service life whilst eliminating the “Lo” lifter reline.

• Mitigate the risk of cracked liners,

• Reduce reline time in conjunction with reduced shutdowns.

26 © Metso September 2017 Metplant The Evolution of SAG Shell Design.


Case Study 3
• Upon successful trial a full Skip-Row shell lining system was installed.

27 © Metso September 2015 Metplant Understanding The Effects of Liner Wear on SAG Mill Performance
Case Study 3 – Mill Performance

28 © Metso September 2017 Metplant The Evolution of SAG Shell Design.


Case Study 3 – Mill Performance
Summary
t/h kW kWh
Average Pre 497.5 10,090 20.28
Average Post 563.25 9,930 17.63
Difference 65.75 -160 -2.6

% Difference 13.22% -1.59% -15.03

Confidence t-test 99.5% 99.55% N/A

29 © Metso September 2017 Metplant The Evolution of SAG Shell Design.


Case Study 3 – Mill Performance

30 © Metso September 2017 Metplant The Evolution of SAG Shell Design.


Case Study 3 – Mill Performance Analysis
1. Improved trajectory,
- Reduced Steel on Steel impacts for increased efficiency.

31 © Metso September 2017 Metplant The Evolution of SAG Shell Design.


Case Study 3 – Mill Performance Analysis

32 © Metso September 2017 Metplant The Evolution of SAG Shell Design.


Case Study 3 – Mill Performance Analysis

1. Proportions of fine material in the cataracting charge is


reduced.

2. The charge density or charge pressure head is higher for


the Skip Row design by 0.19 metres or 2.6% allowing for
higher efficiencies in the cascade grinding region.
3. The no grinding region has been reduced by approximately
8% in the Skip Row design, further increasing grinding
efficiencies

33 © Metso September 2017 Metplant The Evolution of SAG Shell Design.


Case Study 3 – Mill Performance Analysis

34 © Metso September 2017 Metplant The Evolution of SAG Shell Design.


Case Study 3: Economics
Item Increased Profitability (M AUD)

Reduction in liner and reline costs 0.1 M AUD < Benefit Range < 1 M AUD

35 © Metso September 2017 Metplant The Evolution of SAG Shell Design.


Case Study 3: Economics
Item Increased Profitability (M AUD)

Reduction in liner and reline costs 0.1 M AUD < Benefit Range < 1 M AUD

Increase in mill availability 1 M AUD < Benefit Range < 10 M AUD

36 © Metso September 2017 Metplant The Evolution of SAG Shell Design.


Case Study 3: Economics
Item Increased Profitability (M AUD)

Reduction in liner and reline costs 0.1 M AUD < Benefit Range < 1 M AUD

Increase in mill availability 1 M AUD < Benefit Range < 10 M AUD

Increase in Production 10 M AUD < Benefit Range < 100 M


AUD

37 © Metso September 2017 Metplant The Evolution of SAG Shell Design.


Future Work
Megaliner

38 © Metso September 2017 Metplant The Evolution of SAG Shell Design.


Megaliner
Safe and fast installation of new liners

• Liners placed by the liner handler operator


acting alone

• Guiding markers facilitate easy positioning


and alignment of liners

• New, patented liner positioning system uses


camera technology

39 © Metso September 2017 Metplant The Evolution of SAG Shell Design.


Megaliner
Easy removal of worn liners

40 © Metso September 2017 Metplant The Evolution of SAG Shell Design.


Megaliner
Safe and fast installation of new liners

41 © Metso September 2017 Metplant The Evolution of SAG Shell Design.


Megaliner
Safe and fast installation of new liners

Hi-Lo Design Skip Row Design MegaLiner™


Liner Quantity Liner Quantity Liner Quantity
Shell Liners Shell Liners Shell Liners
FE Low Lifter Bar 32 FE Lifter Bar 30 FE Liner 30
FE High Lifter Bar 32 Mid Lifter Bar 30 Mid Liner 30
FE Shell Liner 64 DE l Lifter Bar 30 DE Liner 30
DE Shell Liner 64 Shell Plates 90
DE Low Lifter Bar 32 0
DE High Lifter Bar 32

TOTAL PIECES 256 180 90

Relative % 100% 70% 35%

42 © Metso September 2017 Metplant The Evolution of SAG Shell Design.


Conclusions

• There has been a noticeable trend in recent decades to abandon


2D lifter arrangements for either 4/3D or 1D liner arrangements.

• The use of 1D liner arrangements is particularly suited to large


AG/SAG mills were the larger lifters dictate a wide spacing is
required to ensure there is no packing.

• However, with the trend of SAG mills being fed secondary crush
material and operating at low mill fillings 1D liner arrangements
are becoming applicable to moderately sized SAG mills.

43 © Metso September 2017 Metplant The Evolution of SAG Shell Design.


Conclusions

• The Skip Row design is a 1D liner design which eliminates the


major risk associated with converting liners from 2D to 1D: Plate
failure.

• The Skiprow design has shown to out perform 2D liner


arrangement in a variety of scenarios and provide;
• Reduced Cost
• Improved Mill Availability
• Increased Mill Throughput

44 © Metso September 2017 Metplant The Evolution of SAG Shell Design.


Conclusions

• Improved performance is likely due to multiple factors including;


-Improved trajectory,
-Elimination of packing,
-Larger lifting pocketed,
-Increased charge pressure,
-Reduction in no grinding region.

45 © Metso September 2017 Metplant The Evolution of SAG Shell Design.


Conclusions

• For the Hidden Valley Case study a increase in throughput of


13% was achieved immediately after converting from a 2D Hi-Lo
liner configuration.

• In addition to the increased throughput the number of relines


required were halved and the reline time reduced by
approximately 30%.

• This was all achieved with liners that cost less on a per annum
basis.

46 © Metso September 2017 Metplant The Evolution of SAG Shell Design.


Acknowledgements

Co-Authors: Morne Swart, Håkan Ståhlbröst.

Figures & Images: Pritesh Ranchod.

Harmony Gold & Metso.

47 © Metso September 2017 Metplant The Evolution of SAG Shell Design.


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