Two example research projects from Control Engineering:
MineSense and EnSaCo
Jari Ruuska
Sustainable mineral processing by on-line
optical measurements towards better process
Technical Research Centre of Finland (VTT) – Photonic Devices and
Measurement Solutions
University of Oulu – Control Engineering laboratory
Oulun yliopisto / Oulu Mining School / Kari Knuutila
The goal
The goal of the project is to apply novel optical
instrumentation and process control to the whole cycle
of ore beneficiation as the aim the sustainability.
Using the latest on-line optical instrumentation for
monitoring the important process parameters of each
stage together with advanced mill-wide process
control would enable better control and
optimization of the processes, leading to savings in raw
material use, chemicals, water and energy.
The improved process automation enables optimized
process performance and yield.
Work packages I (II)
WP1 underlines the unit processes which need most the online measurements to improve efficiency and sustainability.
WP2 produces essential information on the usability of different
methods as real-time monitoring tools in the beneficiation
processes. WP2 aims at development of on-line monitoring
tools based on on-line particle size, flotation bubble size, NIR
spectroscopy, multipoint NIR and NIR chemical imaging.
Moreover, feasibility of these measurements in real-time monitoring
of particle size, bubble size, moisture and mineral content is
evaluated in WP2.
WP 4 aims for verifying the performance of the instrument
prototypes build in WP3 for monitoring the unit process.
Work packages II (II)
Additionally, tests are run in the pilot line and data is collected for
analysis and simulations. Analysis of the results for deploying the
system for full scale will be carried out in WP5.
WP 6 focuses on developing the models essential for the simulation
environment applied in the plant-wide control study.
In WP 7 the potential of soft sensors in monitoring the mineral
beneficiation processes is studied.
WP8 focuses on the plant-wide control development and integration of
the optical measurements and soft sensors to the model.
Oulun yliopisto / Oulu Mining School / Kari Knuutila
Energy and Chemicals Saving Flotation
University of Oulu –
Process and Environmental Engineering/Mineral processing and
Control Engineering,
Mechanical Engineering/Mechatronics and Machine Diagnostics
& Geosciences
The research aims I(II)
To find the most suitable crushing methods and equipment
types based on the ore grains mineralogy and strength
To find and to develop the on-line method for evaluation of
the aggregate mineralogical compound
To find and develop the system to control the maintenance
and actions of the mill e.g. the measuring system to
measure the specific energy consumed in the actual
grinding of the mill, the abrasion of the grinding bodies and
the composition of cyclic flows in the grinding load.
The research aims II(II)
To find the mineralogical basics and technical solutions to
execute the conditioning with the continuous grinding
considering the control of the electrochemical conditions in
the grinding chamber.
To produce the information about the effect of the grinding
and conditioning treatment to ore flotation with the
continuous grinding circuit
To create the calculation model of the flotation based on
the results of mineralogical analysis and the information of
the continuous and laboratory flotation.