The replicas, also referred to as mirrors, are managed by an Integrated Operations Center, which is considered “the brain” of Quellaveco.
In a news release, Anglo stated that there are digital twins of the grinding system, flotation, tailings management, water control, and electrical system, among other areas. Using expert system, these twins ‘find out’ how things are supposed to exercise and offer recommendations that avoid devices or process failures, therefore enhancing expenses and time.
As an example, Anglo pointed out the possibility of inputting a parameter for a pump and seeing how it behaves. If it doesn’t work properly, the specification can be altered as many times as needed till the right data result in efficient outcomes that can be taken into the real life.
“NASA utilized this innovation for the very first time more than 50 years earlier, to save the team of the Apollo 13 objective, after their spaceship suffered a breakdown and they were not able to arrive at the moon,” the communiqué reads. “With the development of the Internet of Things and information management based on expert system, digital twins have made an outstanding technological leap and are now utilized in different markets.”
According to the miner, Quellaveco is the first 100% digital mine in Peru and is amongst the first ones to carry out digital twin innovation to enhance performance and security.
The mine, which got $5.5 billion in financial investments, started pilot production of copper concentrate last July and it is expected to yield between 80,000 and 100,000 tonnes in 2022. Once operations ramp up, production is forecast to reach 300,000 tonnes per year in its very first 10 years.
Quellaveco is owned by Anglo American and Japan’s Mitsubishi Corp, holding 60% and 40% of capital, respectively.