Keramos were asked by a copper/zinc producer to investigate the excessive wear in the mill linings and agitator arms of their Metso Detritor Mills. The mills were using an alumina ceramic grinding media and achieving satisfactory grinding performance, but the wear rate of the mill linings was intolerable. The mills required complete relining EVERY 6 WEEKS.
The mills had originally been running a poor quality ceramic media with excessive consumption rates (>35 tonnes per month) for the two mills. In order to reduce consumption rates and costs, the company approached another ceramic grinding media supplier and were offered a better quality of media, which reduced the consumption rate to around 25 tonnes per month. However the wear rates on the mill linings increased dramatically (change out every 6 weeks) and the new supplier of ceramic media could not offer any alternatives.
Keramos determined that the SG of the media being used by the company was incorrect for this type of application and recommended the use of a lower SG media with specific properties. The Keramos media resulted in an immediate drop in consumption to 18 tonnes per month and even more significantly, the mill linings then needed to be changed only EVERY 12 MONTHS.
After successfully helping our customer, Keramos proposed the development and trial of an even better media. The new Keramos media has a consumption rate of about 10 tonnes per month, and the mill linings still only need to be changed every 12 months.
Keramos has saved the company around AUD$2 million per year directly on media costs. The other savings are mill linings, agitator arms, maintenance costs, downtime, freight and storage. Consequently, the company has awarded Keramos a long-term contract for the supply of their ceramic grinding media.