Prudentia were engaged to perform a fast-tracked front-end study to determine plant cooling capacity and how to implement a temporary facility in 3 months to deliver the benefits to the client (other project teams advised it was a +2 year delivery). Approaching the problem differently enabled us to deliver the upgrade with a practical solution, intended to be a temporary installation but continues to run +5 years later.
The client identified a concept to improve the copper quality of the electrowinning circuit by improving the temperature control of the system and had completed laboratory work to confirm this. The issue was exacerbated over summer when the ambient temperatures raised process conditions of the system.
Prudentia were approached by the client in August with the objective of having a facility up and running by the end of October (ready for summer). We understood the key control band that was needed to be achieved, and quickly completed a circuit assessment and balance to size the cooling system. Applying divergent thinking we assessed not only the indirect cooling approach but other novel concepts around the process. We knew procurement of new equipment (cooling towers, heat exchangers, pumps etc) would not have the lead time required, hence we engaged in the rental and second hand markets to develop and select the optimum solution for the clients needs. Modifications to the existing plant were completed (designed with a permanent connection in mind) to enable integration of the system.
The project delivered the stated objective of improvement in temperature control and has been operational every summer since.