ABEL HMQ – Transfer of thickened tailings
Our Customer is headquartered in Latin America. Its core activities are copper extraction, processing and sales. The company generates an annual production volume of about 100,000 tons of fine copper.
The production process requires a technology capable of pumping thickened tailings with the highest solid content possible without risking stoppages of the transport line. Knowing that the company would incur unacceptably high costs if it had to interrupt metal production due to unexpected downtime of the pumping equipment, piston-diaphragm pump technology emerged as the best option for tackling this demanding task. Given the specific production requirements of the mining site, the pumps were planned for continuously operation, 24 hours a day, 365 days per year.
The requirements of the application, the characteristics of the tailings, the importance of the pumping equipment availability and the need for pumps with the highest overall efficiency resulted in the selection of the ABEL piston diaphragm technology as it fully satisfied all requirements. Pumping the thickened tailings is a top priority for the production process. As a solution, ABEL proposed to install one single piston-diaphragm pump of the HMQ series, which is best suited for the specific operational requirements.
The ABEL HMQ can reach a discharge pressure of 75 bar, a flow rate of 230 m³/h with solids content of 62%, which means that the client can count on an hourly thickened tailings displacement of 375 metric tons in total. These pumping parameters are met with a power consumption of less than 558 kW, which complies with efficiency and availability parameters required by our customer. Furthermore, the application also requires the equipment to adapt its pumping flow rate to varying production circumstances. This is rendered possible thanks to the use of a VFD which ensures an efficiency of 92% independent of the actual flow rate, material solid content or mixture viscosity. The ABEL pumps have been installed and commissioned in 2016 and they have been operated since then.