The Process of Applying Dust Suppressant in Tranque Quillayes has Begun

Management Information Technology
2014-09-29
Minera Los Pelambres

As part of the work performed by the Department of Water Resources, and based on values of responsibility to provide health, safety, and innovation as a common practice, the process of applying a dust suppressant in Tranque Quillayes has begun. This measure will control the emission of particle matter and will bring about improvement in risk prevention and considerable saving in the amount of water reused—about seven times in the process—, which will contribute to wetting the dam’s wall.

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"We are after two main objectives. The first goal is people’s safety, since we eliminated the permanent risk of exposure to product irrigation and high pressure lines. On the other hand, we have the possibility to optimize water resources, since that water that was being used for irrigation, and lost by evaporation, will become part of the process", said Rodrigo Bernal, Water Specialist Engineer.

Similarly he added, "This water comes from the dam’s baseline drains, specifically pools drains, which is pumped to the TK dilution that was previously used for cycloning. Today, this water is sent to the fixed ground station and is pumped to the plant. Some of this water is sent to the wall —the calculation we have on balance sheets is about 24 liters per second (380 gpm), which are used on average per day, equivalent to 750,000 m3 per year (198 Million gallons per year)—, and will be used in the production process and not be wasted."

The product known as "Soiltac", applied by the partner company Aguasin, will be used on 90 hectares (222 acres), with an average of four hectares (10 acres) per day. It is expected that the work will be completed by the end of October.

"The application is innovative because of the pigment used, since it simulates the brown in the environment. The color helps verify where it was applied and is friendly to the environment, doing away with the lead color that the community dislikes. Similarly, it is a measure of the closing process of the dam as mitigation, pending the final closure of the wall that is under review, "Bernal said.

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