Integrated optimization and simulation models for short-term open-pit mine planning

Author(s): Torres, V. F. Navarro; Mateus, G.R.; Martins, A. G.; Carneiro, W.; Chaves, L. S.
Summary: Operational mine planning is a fundamental activity in mine operations and should take into account various characteristics of the material, the available mining faces, the requirements of discharge points, and production hiatuses due to reduced equipment operational efficiency, in order to efficiently allocate shovels and trucks and deliver the required tonnage and quality to the proper destinations. This paper presents an approach for optimizing short-term day-to-day mining operations using simulation. A mathematical model based on integer linear programming is developed. The solution is obtained through two different software packages using discrete event simulation (Arena) and a mathematical optimization model (Lingo). The two integrated models search an efficient solution to optimize a set of criteria by applying goal programming to hierarchically optimize five objective functions in a logical priority order under the operator’s standpoint and by simulating mining operations and unproductive events to evaluate how closely the optimized results are actually achieved. The integrated models are applied to a real large-scale iron ore mine in southeastern Brazil. A decision support system (DSS) prototype that meets the production requirements is also applied. The results show that an increase in the available loading equipment will not result necessarily in increased production, as expected. The models show satisfactory results and applicability to real and complex mining situations, and the formulation allows for easy adaptation to other mine situations.
Journal: The Journal of the Southern African Institute of Mining and Metallurgy
Year: 2020
Volume: v. 120, n. 11
Pages: p. 617-626
DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.17159/24119717/1266/2020
Year of publication: 2020
Available at: https://www.saimm.co.za/Journal/v120n11p617.pdf