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TUTORIAL

SimSched Pit Optimizer Beta

October / 2014
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Tutorial SimSched Pit Optimizer Beta

MiningMath Associates

SUMMARY

1.

MININGMATH SIMSCHED ............................................................................. 3

2.

INSTALLATION .............................................................................................. 3

3.

INITIALIZATION OF SIMSCHED ................................................................... 4

4.

LICENCE ACTIVATION ................................................................................... 5

5.

BLOCK MODEL FORMATTING ........................................................................ 5

6.

IMPORT BLOCK MODEL ................................................................................. 7

7.

PIT OPTIMIZATION ..................................................................................... 11

8.

CONTACT ..................................................................................................... 16

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Tutorial SimSched Pit Optimizer Beta

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1.

MININGMATH SIMSCHED
The Beta version of SimSched Pit Optimizer software is available in the form of a
plugin to the free SGeMS software (http://www.ar2tech.com/products), which is
developed and maintain by Advanced Resources and Risk Technology, LLC
(AR2Tech) (http://www.ar2tech.com). The aim with this integration is providing
more graphical and statistical analysis tools, without incurring additional costs to the
user. The distribution of this version of SGeMS by MiningMath was authorized by
AR2Tech.

2.

INSTALLATION
The installation procedure is illustrated in the steps in Figure 1, running the installer.

Figure 1 Installation procedure of SimSched Pit Optimizer Beta.

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Tutorial SimSched Pit Optimizer Beta

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3.

INITIALIZATION OF SIMSCHED
After opening the SGeMS software, select MiningMath | SimSched Pit
Optimizer, on Algorithms. At the bottom of the pane, click the Run Algorithm
function, as highlighted in Figure 2. The SimSched interface will open in a new
window, as shown in Figure 3.

Figure 2 Initialization of SimSched through SGeMS.

Figure 3 Initial SimSched interface.

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4.

LICENCE ACTIVATION
On the initial SimSched interface, select Options. Enter the email address of the
license (E-mail) and the key (Key), as shown in Figure 4.

Figure 4 Insertion of the access key.

5.

BLOCK MODEL FORMATTING


The block model must have regular dimensions, and the import file must be adapted
to the CSV format. This file must have a header and fields separated by commas,
using dot notation as the decimal separator. It is necessary to remove air blocks, in
order for the software to identify the topography. The metric system should be used
as units for imported data.
The required fields for each block (each line of the file to be imported) are:

Indices on X, Y and Z;
Grades (at least one element); and
Economic values.

The indices of each block represent its position in the model, indicating in which
column, line and level (IX, IY and IZ) it is. The indices must be integer values
starting at 1.
Each block must have associated economic values related to it being sent to each
possible destination.
Optional fields:

Density (t/m3).
Slope angle (degrees).
Process recoveries (values from 0 to 1).

Figure 5 provides an example of a block model prepared and ready to be imported


into SimSched using the Marvin block model example - based on data available in
the MineLib repository (http://mansci-web.uai.cl/minelib/marvin.xhtml.).
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Tutorial SimSched Pit Optimizer Beta

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Figure 5 Visualization of the Marvin Model (CSV) through the Microsoft Excel software.

Each field related to economic value (Economic Value Process/Waste) must report
the value of each block as a function of its destination, grades, recovery, cost of
mining, transport, treatment, selling price, etc. The user is not required to pre-set
the destination, as the software will determine the best option during the
optimization.
To illustrate the calculation of economic values, an example is shown based on the
block with indices (IX, IY, IZ) = (17, 22, 7), highlighted in Figure 5. The calculation
parameters are described in Table 1, below:
Table 1 Parameters for calculating the economic values of the blocks.
Description

Cu_%

Au_PPM

0.88

0.60

Selling price ($)

2000.00

12.00

Selling cost ($)

720.00

0.20

Recovery

Processing cost ($/t)

4.00

Mining cost ($/t)

0.90

Discount rate (%)

10

Dimension of the blocks in X (m)

30

Dimension of the blocks in Y (m)

30

Dimension of the blocks in Z (m)

30

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Tutorial SimSched Pit Optimizer Beta

MiningMath Associates

(
(

(
(
(

))
))

))
(

(
(
(

))
(

))
))

Therefore, $ 334,793 will be the economic value of the block if it is sent to the
process and $ -65,124 will be the economic value if it is discarded as waste.
SimSched will be responsible for defining the appropriate destination for each block.

6.

IMPORT BLOCK MODEL


Select the Import option to import the block model. Notice in Figure 6 the File
name input field is shown in red, indicating a mandatory field. Browse for and select
the CSV formatted file and press Next.

Figure 6 Import CSV file selection.

In the next window, shown in Figure 7, the model name (Name) must be entered.
Optionally, the destination folder (Folder) can be changed and a description
(Description) added.
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Figure 7 Import name, destination and description.

Upon clicking Next, the following window will provide a statistical summary of
information for the block model that will be imported, as shown in Figure 8.

Figure 8 Import statistical summary of the selected block model.

When Next is clicked, a form will show correlations between the imported CSV file
header and the available field types in SimSched.
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As illustrated in Figure 9, the form displays a table containing a preview of the


imported block model and two header rows. The top header row has the definitions
made by SimSched and the bottom row shows the headers of the CSV file. You must
associate each column imported, as, for example, to associate the block indices IX,
IY and IZ to the system variables Index X, Index Y and Index Z, through the list of
options located just above the table. Please note the required mandatory fields, as
described in Section 5. For this version, only one field can be selected as a Grade
type.

Figure 9 Import association of model fields.

Upon clicking Next, the CSV file will be imported into SimSched and request
additional data related to the dimensions of blocks and units of imported grade
elements, as illustrated in Figure 10.
After filling in the required fields, the options View Model and Pit Optimization
will be enabled.
Before proceeding with the pit optimization, it is possible to view the imported model
by clicking View Model. When selected, SimSched will be closed and the preview
will be available on the SGeMS interface, as shown in Figure 11.

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Figure 10 Import parameters of the block model.

Figure 11 Visualization of the imported block model.

Please consult the specific SGeMS documentation, including videos available on


YouTube, for details on the options of viewing, creating sections, filters, statistics,
etc.

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Tutorial SimSched Pit Optimizer Beta

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7.

PIT OPTIMIZATION
After visual validation, reopen SimSched and double click the latest scenario, which
contains the imported model, through the Recent scenarios Guide, as shown in
Figure 12.

Figure 12 SimSched restart.

The Pit Optimization tab is automatically selected with the General form open, as
illustrated in Figure 13. This version of the software is limited to the option Only Pit
Optimization. The option Direct Block Scheduling will be available and marketed
starting in 2015 and will allow a complete scheduling to be run straight from the
block model, without the need to define the final pit, nested pits, mining phases, cutoff optimization and stockpiles. The scheduler will find a mining plan that maximizes
the net present value of the project, considering all these aspects and optimizing all
mining periods simultaneously. This will allow for the definition of which blocks will
be mined, in which periods and with optimized destinations.
A default value for the density and slope angle is required to be entered, as
highlighted in Figure 13. The default values informed will be used if no specific fields
have been imported and selected through the Field boxes, or if there exists blocks
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Tutorial SimSched Pit Optimizer Beta

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with no data. In the example of this tutorial, the density field must be selected for it
to be considered by the optimization. The other parameters are disabled referring
only to the currently unavailable option Direct Block Scheduling.
After entering the required parameters, the Destinations option on the toolbar is
enabled and must be clicked.

Figure 13 General form filled.

On the form Destinations the possible destinations to where the blocks can be sent
will be defined. Each target must be mapped with their respective field containing
the economic values, as shown in Section 5. To add a processing route, click on Add
Process at the bottom right of the window, as highlighted in Figure 14. To add a
route for waste disposal, click on Add Dump.

Figure 14 Adding process and route for waste disposal.

In the Recovery field of the added process, provide the related process recovery of
selected grade element of the model, which will be the only element reported in the

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Tutorial SimSched Pit Optimizer Beta

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optimization, as shown in Figure 15. On the Economic value field, select the
equivalent imported field along with the block model (Economic Value Process).
In the Economic value field of the added route of disposal, select the equivalent
imported field along with the block model (Economic Value Waste).

Figure 15 Destinations form filled.

After completing the previous fields, click Constraints. At this stage, surfaces may
be selected, in the form of a grid of elevations in CSV format, with physical limits to
force or restrict mining in certain regions of the deposit. This functionality will not be
explored in this basic tutorial. The minimum width of the pit bottom (Minimum
bottom width), illustrated in Figure 16, can be filled with, for example, the value
100 to ensure a bottom with a minimum diameter of 100 meters.

Figure 16 Constraints form filled.

Click Overview, for a single page summary of all completed parameters related to
the pit optimization, as illustrated by Figure 17.
The Save as option can be used to archive the scenario, including the specific input
parameters recorded by the user. With this functionality, it is possible to optimize
various pits, for example, varying economic values, without having to re-import the
block model.
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Tutorial SimSched Pit Optimizer Beta

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Click Run to execute the pit optimization.

Figure 17 Overview form filled.

SimSched will generate the reserves report directly in Microsoft Excel software, as
shown in Figure 18, and the optimized pit (blocks and surface) in SGeMS, as shown
in Figure 19. The automatic preview shows only the blocks mined, coloured
according to the destination set by the optimizer. Two clouds of points representing
the topography and the final pit can be selected on the left, in the list of objects for
viewing.

Figure 18 Final report for the pit optimized.

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Tutorial SimSched Pit Optimizer Beta

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Figure 19 Optimized pit preview.

SimSched will automatically save the list of the optimized blocks (MinedBlocks.csv) in
the block model folder, as shown in Figure 20. Similarly, a surface with the final pit
(UltimatePitSurface.csv) will be saved, as shown in Figure 21, that can be imported
into other mining software packages.

Figure 20 CSV file listing blocks contained in the optimized pit and destinations defined.

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Tutorial SimSched Pit Optimizer Beta

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The file MinedBlocks.csv contains indices and coordinates of blocks, indicating in the
column MINED BLOCK whether each block will be mined (=1) or not (=0), and in the
column TARGET DESTINATION which will be the destination of the mined blocks.
The other columns contain other data and parameters used. Fields with -99 values
indicate the absence of information.

Figure 21 CSV file with grid points of the surface of the optimized pit.

The file UltimatePitSurface.csv contains X, Y, and Z coordinates, distributed in the


form of a grid with the same X and Y coordinates of the block model and the surface
elevation represented in the Z coordinate.

8.

CONTACT
If you have any questions, please contact us via e-mail: support@miningmath.com.

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