The Admiral Bay underground zinc mine is located in the Canning basin of Western Australia.
IDE is a global leader in water technologies and offers exceptionally efficient solutions for deep-mine cooling and zero liquid discharge (ZLD) wastewater recycling. It has deployed a dozen of its cutting-edge mechanical vapor compression (MVC) and vacuum ice makers (VIM) units for mines in Latin America, Australia and South Africa, including:
- Mponeng (owned by AngloGold Ashanti), the world’s deepest gold mine, which, Johannesburg, South Africa, has been using IDE’s VIM ice makers successfully for 20 years
- The Paddington Gold Mine in Kalgoorlie, Australia (owned by Pancontinental), which has been using IDE’s brine concentrators / evaporators successfully for 25 years
IDE’s solutions are based on advanced heat exchange and evaporation technologies that reduce energy consumption while helping mines comply with strict environmental regulations.
Deep-mine cooling and wastewater recycling
IDE’s vacuum ice maker (VIM) for deep-mine cooling, is the most energy-efficient ice maker on the market. Consuming less than 1kW of power per ton of refrigeration, the VIM delivers a cooling capacity of up to 1,000TonR (3,500kW) per unit at any ambient temperature. The VIM’s use of water rather than environmentally-harmful gases makes it exceedingly safe. As a result, the VIM makes transportable ice one of the most cost-efficient and eco-friendly approaches to mine cooling.
Vacuum ice maker for deep-mine cooling
The VIM’s efficiency is achieved by cycling water repeatedly through a vacuum-freeze-concentration–ice delivery process, thereby maximising the utilization of the latent heat of ice and minimising the use of external energy. The savings are multiplied by the fact that the process decreases the required mass flow of water into the deep mine by about 75%, thereby sharply reducing the energy required to recirculate the water.
IDE’s VIM solution operates equally well with fresh or saline feed water, and can be configured with desalination and/or thermal energy storage (TES) capabilities. Features and benefits:
- Low energy consumption (less than 1kW/TonR) due to utilisation of the latent heat of ice and reduction of cooling mass flow
- Ability to use any type of feed water
- Significantly reduced cost, size and volume of piping compared to water-based cooling solutions. The produced ice falls freely into an open shaft that has no need to withstand high pressure and requires no insulation
- High refrigeration capability per module (3.5MW per unit)
- Optional desalination and/or thermal energy storage (TES) capabilities
- Environmentally friendly due to the usage of water as the primary refrigerant
Industrial evaporation solutions for ZLD wastewater recycling
IDE’s industrial evaporation solutions are cost-effective, eco-friendly systems for concentrating saline wastewater brines. Designed for low temperature operation, IDE’s systems feature high thermal efficiency, reduced scale accumulation and superior availability, together with automatic control of seeds concentration. To assure optimal performance, IDE tailors each installation to site-specific conditions.
modular mechanical and thermal vapor compression evaporators
IDE’s modular mechanical and thermal vapor compression evaporators can also be used for desalination, assuring a reliable, continuous supply of highly-pure water for all uses, regardless of the quality of the local feed water. Features and benefits include:
- Reduced water consumption
- Reduced effluents
- Compliance with strict ZLD regulations
- Capture of revenue-producing by-products
- Ease of operation
- High energy efficiency
- Robust and reliable
Established in 1965, IDE is a world leader in the development and construction of water treatment, seawater desalination, refrigeration plants and snowmaking systems. To date, IDE has installed 400 plants in over 40 countries, and is now using its advanced heat exchange and other technologies to solve some of the mining industry’s most difficult challenges.
IDE takes a comprehensive, end-to-end approach to ensure the success of its projects and the satisfaction of its customers. All solutions are based on proprietary, internally-developed technologies customized to meet the specific needs of each project.