The leaders in intelligent mine scheduling optimisation have pushed the benchmark even higher with the recent release of Maptek Evolution 5.1.
Close collaboration with mining experts to provide targeted applications has defined the development journey of Evolution. The computational power of the software is unparalleled in the scheduling arena and is underpinned by a drive to provide innovative solutions to current and prospective scheduling problems.
The latest release features updates to Evolution Strategy and Origin modules to enhance medium, long term and strategic life of mine scheduling, reducing operating costs and maximising deposit value.
The ground-breaking multi-objective optimisation algorithm introduced into Evolution Origin for scheduling with blocks has been expanded to handle scheduling with solids. Users can now optimise with solids on NPV and blending, comparing multiple conflicting objectives to define a range of practical solutions for consideration.
‘Before, we had Origin solids as a single object optimisation but now we’ve added multi-objective optimisation. So, what was possible with blocks is now possible with solids. This allows our users to create life of mine to medium term schedules based on a pre-defined cutoff grade. Our holistic approach includes haulage and waste dump for optimisation, plus blending and NPV,’ said Evolution Product Manager, Eduardo Coloma.
Among the upgrades to Origin, when indications suggest the blend grade can be improved at any particular point, the software will step back and redirect material using replay functionality.
Targeted improvements for coal customers include greater flexibility around dependencies, functionality to add multiple dragline excavators and enhanced haulage configuration.
The Strategy module also boasts many enhancements. The seeding function, a popular feature from Origin, has been incorporated into Strategy on customer request. The simple and intuitive interface allows users to select previous results, replicate the sequence of some periods and optimise further periods, providing greater flexibility and control. Multiple solutions can be compared in the pivot tables, providing an easy way to assess the outcomes.
Providing multiple waste dump options in Evolution Strategy delivers more detail about where material is going. A simple workflow allows as many waste dumps as needed to be added, with options to consider associated haulage costs, define the incremental capacity and costs and indicate the most cost-effective strategy.
Reporting has never been quicker or easier. With Evolution 5.1, users now can customise period naming. Further enhancements to pivot table functionality include the ability to filter all available fields, and the option to pivot against waste dumps.
Integration between Maptek Vulcan and Evolution streamlines critical mine planning activities. Road haulage networks generated in Vulcan can be dragged and dropped into Evolution. Scheduling attributes can be loaded onto Vulcan triangulations for further analysis. Users can create a Vulcan block model in Evolution to take advantage of the Schedule Progress option in Vulcan.
‘Our next major milestone on the horizon is Evolution 6,’ concluded Coloma. ‘We’re excited about the future. Considering multiple activities during scheduling, more versatile Gantt charting, reserving “on the fly” and greater flexibility around mining rules headline the development roadmap as Evolution expands into short term scheduling.’