Test work demonstrated that the Caula ore is highly amenable to sensor-based ore sorting.
Results showed that an ore sample with no visible waste could be split into high-grade and low-grade streams.
Importantly, the results demonstrate the potential to increase production rates without increasing the plant size and to reduce operating costs
Applicable to full-scale mining
The tests found that in a full-scale mining operation, electromagnetic sorting would efficiently reject barren waste with minimal loss of graphite or vanadium values.
Testing also showed that a moderate-grade ore sample with no visible waste could be successfully split into high-grade and low-grade fractions.
In conclusion, ore sorting has the potential to upgrade graphite and vanadium grades at Caula.
Two ore sorting methods tested
Both x-ray transmission (XRT) and electromagnetic (EM) sorting were evaluated.
The EM sorting achieved greater levels of separation of graphite and vanadium values than the XRT sorting.
Ore sorting specialist TOMRA recommends a larger-scale formal test work program based on these strong results.