Season 9 Challenges

OPENED ON: 12 MAY 2020  |  CLOSING ON: 12 AUG 2020  |  REWARD: INR 9,00,000
Reward money is paid in exchange of legally acquiring the solution, implementing it to solve the problem and meeting the success criteria. Milestones for paying the reward money would depend upon the complexity of challenge and maturity of the proposed solution, which would be discussed with the solver as soon as the proposed solution is selected by us.
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Short Description:

The conventional methods used for delineation of Manganese orebodies and prediction of quality consists of analysing surface geology and then sub-surface exploration by drilling. However, these methods are time-consuming and expensive. We are seeking solutions that will enable us to predict orebody delineation, its grade and physical conditions like lumps/fines accurately.

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Challenge Details

 

The Manganese orebody in our mines is lensoidal, discontinuous, fragmented in nature and generally occurs up to a depth of 60-70 m from surface. The conventional methods used for delineation of Manganese orebodies and prediction of quality consists of analysing surface geology and then sub-surface exploration by drilling. As per the mining guidelines, for General Exploration, drilling at an interval of 100x100m is required to delineate irregular, discontinuous orebodies. For detailed exploration, close-spaced drilling at an interval of 50x50m  is necessary to delineate the Manganese ore bodies. Both methods are time-consuming and are very costly; however, these methods are statutory.  

In addition to determining ore body delineation, we also need to:

a) predict lumps/fines ratio and the quantity of low/medium/high grade ore  and

b) determine the hardness of orebodies for determination of lump/fines ratio during blasting of orebodies

At present, during exploration, predictions on orebody delineation are made based on the analysis of the drill cores or the drill cuttings. Drill cores are crushed and screened to assess the lumps/fine ratio. Besides, the prediction can be inaccurate if the variation is high within the small pockety nature of orebody.

In addition to drilling, geophysical methods such as magnetic, electrical resistivity, electromagnetic, gravity and seismic methods are commonly used in understanding the orientation of the orebody. Ground-penetrating radar (GPR) is another electromagnetic method used for very near-surface applications. Due to the similarity in properties of the ore body (Manganese) and host rock (Shale, Laterite), the efficacy of geophysical methods is not adequate to meet the objective. Therefore, the final delineation of the orebody and the prediction of its quality can be ascertained only through exploration based on drilling and analysis of the drill core/cutting samples. The geophysical methods can help us reduce the exploration cost by providing data in advance about the occurrence of the orebody pockets. However, geophysical methods alone, are not deterministic, therefore, can only provide an indicative assessment.

We are seeking solutions that will enable us to predict orebody delineation, its grade and physical conditions like lumps/fines accurately, without using any of the conventional techniques mentioned above.

Options tried

  • Electrical resistivity and the magnetic geophysical survey had been tried in the past but without much success. We did not get accurate predictions of orebody delineation.  

Requirements:

  • The solution should produce accurate predictions on orebody delineation, lumps/fines ratio and the quantity of low/medium/high grade ore and its grade.
  • The data presented should be easy to understand. It should not need experts to analyse the data to get the predictions.
  • It should be portable, economical and easy to use.
  • It should not be time-consuming to record and analyse the data and get the predictions.
  • The solution should not focus on any of the technologies/methods mentioned above.

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