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The challenge

Creating intelligent coal processing plants

Automation and control of a coal processing plant is a real challenge.

A coal dredge

In order to automate, we first need to know the current operating position of the plant and how various changes affect operations – in particular, the dense medium cyclone (DMC) circuit, which processes 80 per cent of the plant's feed.


Our response

Intelligent plants and smart-systems development

We have collaborated with the Australian Coal Association Research Program (ACARP) to:

  • identify the major controlling factors for the optimum operation of the DMC circuit
  • develop the required instrumentation to measure factors affecting the operation
  • produce fundamental and empirical models that describe the operation of the DMC. These models will allow us to calculate the washability and partition curves from density and yield data, and develop control options to maintain optimum DMC operation.

This research provides tools to optimise coal-processing techniques for greater efficiency in coal processing.

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