UBC Faculty Research and Publications

Assessment of Sortability Using a Dual-Energy X-ray Transmission System for Studied Sulphide Ore Zhang, Yiran; Yoon, Nawoong; Holuszko, M. E.


In hard rock mining, sensor-based sorting can be applied as a pre-concentration method before the material enters the mill. X-ray transmission sensors have been explored in mining since 1972. Sorting ore of acceptable grade and waste material before processing at the mill can reduce the amount of tailings per unit of valuable metal in the mining operation and have many economic benefits. Ore samples used in this paper are from a polymetallic carbonate replacement deposit (gold-silver-lead-zinc sulphide) in Southeast Europe. This paper focuses on how the Dual-Energy X-ray Transmission (DE-XRT) data is generated and used for ore characterization and sortability for this sulphide ore. The method used in the DE-XRT analysis in this project is based on the dual-material decomposition method, which is used in the medical industry for radiology. This technique can distinguish sulphides from non-sulphides. However, the correlation developed between the DE-XRT response and the metal content is lacking. As a result, the DE-XRT response can only classify the material effectively but cannot reliably predict the metal content.

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