Start optimizing the Net Present Value of your underground mine.
Each underground operation is unique, and the formulation of an underground mining plan is inherently complex and difficult to optimize.
Software tools that automate a component of this process have the potential to add appreciable value to an orebody. Automation allows for extensive appraisal of competing options early in the design process, and for rapid revision of a mining plan later on, in particular following the discovery of adverse conditions (i.e. the real world…).
Introducing – Revolution’s Schedule Optimization Tool
SOT assists with mining plan development, strategy and evaluation for the long-term planning of underground mines. SOT is applied once development openings have been specified, individual stopes have been identified over a block model and orebody extraction has been turned into a set of mining activities. Each mining activity has properties such as mineral grades, tonnage, length and equipment required, so that costs and revenues can be associated correctly, and constraints related to fleet sizes or manpower requirements can be enforced by SOT’s scheduler. Certain activities also have precedence links to other mining activities; for example, a stope cannot be extracted before its access point is created. These precedence constraints are also enforced by SOT.
The optimized schedule of activities effectively forms a mining plan that maximizes the value of the orebody, based on the development and stoping activities. SOT can solve problem instances that are intractable with exact optimization methods. The value is that SOT 3.0 generates in minutes an optimized schedule, adhering to all operational resource constraints, for thousands of activities.
SOT uses the underground mine design as input, i.e., the set of development and stoping activities including precedence links between activities. On import, each mining activity has defined properties such as duration, length, weight, product grades, activity types and mine area. SOT, through its user interface, is then aligned with the scenarios to be evaluated. The primary components of a scenario usually consist of operational resources and capacities as well as the financial model, including the discount rate, projected product prices, operating costs, and capital costs. Based on the mine design and the scenarios, SOT uses custom heuristics and a unique evolutionary algorithm to optimize the net present value of the long-term mine schedule.