FeSi Media Addition System Upgrade

Client: BHP Billiton
EKATI, Yellowknife, NT
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How to extract diamonds from mined material through Dense Media Separation batch processing

The Northern Territory and Nunavut region was discovered as a rich source of gem-quality diamonds in the kimberlite pipes that rose to the surface about 250 million years ago.  In 1998, the EKATI Diamond Mine was developed 300km NE of Yellowknife, as Canada’s first surface and underground diamond mine.

BUSINESS PROBLEM SOLVED

Provide an effective method to separate diamond material from waste material.

TECHNICAL PROBLEM SOLVED

Dense Media Separation process separates the diamond material from the waste material.  Ekati required an upgrade to their separation process to obtain the proper medium density for effective bulk material separation.  A pumped batch process with screw feeder, mix tank and agitator, and cyclone.  The design required the equipment installation to be situated within space constraints of the existing plant, ensuring operational and maintenance access.  Equipment, media addition, pumping, and piping design ensured proper media addition, mixing, and fluid flow for optimal batch diamond removal results while limiting corrosive effects and also endeavouring to minimize water usage and operating costs.

WHAT WE DID

Temec designed a new batch process to separate diamonds from the bulk material through a new FeSi Dense Media Separation system.  The work including development of the process design as well as equipment specifications and installation drawings for all disciplines to deliver a complete engineered solution to Ekati.

Opportunity
Definition
Design
  • Process Design
  • Mechanical & Piping Design
  • Electrical Design
  • Instrumentation & Controls Design
  • Civil & Structural Design
  • Document Control
  • Installation Contracts
Fabrication
Construction
Start Up
In Service