Exploratory data analysis
This is a fundamental stage in resource estimation, where the geological attributes that control the distributions of ore grades are determined. This stage includes analyzes such as: basic statistics, multivariate statistics, analysis of principal components, spatial trends (drifts), ore grade distributions (histograms), among others. GeoInnova develops the exploratory analysis considering aspects such as:
- Contact analysis, study of the transitions of ore grades around the contact of two or more units
- Analysis of distributions of contiguous sections and atomicity level of geological units
- Quantification of contact relations between geological units based on drilling/drillholes
- Quantification of contact relations between geological units in block models
- Analysis of connectivity level by geological unit in block models
- Quantification of surface/volume relationships of ore bodies for dilution studies
GeoInnova seeks to maximize the geological information available, delivering a complete picture of the behavior in a deposit and facilitating decision-making regarding geological modeling and resource estimation.
GeoInnova regards geological modeling as the foundation of resource estimation, articulating the service around 3 main axes
- Having a geological and genetic conceptualization of the deposit in line with the knowledge and information available
- Defining traceable and replicable estimation units that maximize the predictability of estimated resources
- Generating 3D operational geological models, spatially consistent with the available information and geological conceptualization
For the generation of geological models, GeoInnova uses the following approaches: Traditional geological modeling: interpretation in grounds and sections of the geological units for the construction of solids or wireframes 3D Probabilistic modeling: seeks to obtain the probability of occurrence of each UG in non-sampled sites, using methods such as: indicators cokriging, truncated Gaussian kriging. Stochastic modeling of geological units: seeks to deliver several possible scenarios of spatial distribution of geological units, using methods such as: sequential simulation of indicators, plurigaussian simulation, and simulation by multiple point statistics. It allows evaluating transfer functions related to spatial variability of the units. In addition to these approaches, GeoInnova uses an interactive methodology between traditional and probabilistic methods to benefit from both techniques.
GeoInnova makes resource estimates under international industry standards, focusing on critical business factors. Each estimate made is validated using conventional procedures and standards in the industry. Resource estimation is a fundamental part of the mining business; therefore GeoInnova devotes time to analyze each deposit in depth in order to select the appropriate estimation scheme. The resource estimation process is carried out in a traceable and replicable manner. Some of the estimation techniques used by GeoInnova are the following:
- Inverse distance
- Moving average
- Ordinary Kriging
- Indicators Kriging
- Ore grades Cokriging
Resource Classification (JORC)
- Geometric criteria and information density
- Geostatistical criteria, kriging variance, slope of regression line, kriging variance equivalent mesh
In addition to the usual practices, GeoInnova has a resource categorization methodology based on the use of conditional simulations, which considers the following aspects:
- Objective risk function
- Possible estimation errors
- Uncertainty in mineral resources (ore grades and geological units)
- Change of support, considering production volumes
- Data quality
GeoInnova has competent persons from Chile’s Mining Resources and Reserves Competency Qualification Committee.
It refers to the spatial modeling of GMM attributes that impact and condition the performance of metallurgical processes. The attributes considered are typically:
- Metallurgical recovery and/or extraction
- Hardness (work index)
- Acid consumption
- Feed mineralogy
- Leaching or bioleaching test (ferric soluble copper)
GeoInnova implements and recommends a local estimation with the use of simple, massive and low-cost tests that correlate with complex, scarce and expensive metallurgical tests, in order to coregionalize a local estimate through cokriging, which can be incorporated in the mining planning.
Mining reserves estimation
- Analysis of mining methods
- Mining designs for operation
- Economic and technical analysis of the different mining methods under study
Risk analysis on resources and reserves
GeoInnova provides this service with the aim of delivering uncertainty measures to our clients for decision making regarding the influencing factors in the mining business. The methodology involves the generation of multiple scenarios of what the deposit could be, considering the joint spatial variability of geological units and ore grades. These scenarios allow the evaluation of transfer functions, such as the variability in plant feed, determination of sectors with high probability of making errors given the current estimate, among many others.
Joint reviews | Audit preparation
GeoInnova provides the resources and reserves review service focusing on critical business factors, working closely with the client. We seek to deliver a timely and clear diagnosis of improvement areas, as well as potential solutions to them. We hope the joint review to be a beneficial experience for our clients and an added value for their mining projects.
Drill campaign design
GeoInnova provides advisory services for the design of campaigns to identify the sectors with higher uncertainty, in order to optimize the drilling campaign.
Mine to mill
The characterization of the hardness of the rock has an impact on the treatment capacity, and therefore on the direct income of a project or mine. So the Work Index test, Starkey test, uniaxial compression geotechnical test (UCS) and other data could be studied in order to coregionalize the hardness in the deposit.
Analysis of errors in resource estimation
Using conditional simulations it is possible to analyze the spatial distribution of the possible errors of the current estimation model, in order to identify areas of high probability of error.
Analysis of geological dilution and mining selectivity
With this type of studies it is possible to quantify the potential impact of geometry, connectivity level and continuity of geological bodies in mining planning and in geometallurgical problems (recovery, extraction, etc.)
Estimation of resources using variable anisotropies
Geoinnova Consultores performs estimations considering the structural behavior of the deposits in an integral manner, in all the aspects covered by geological modeling and resource estimation.
The works carried out involve the review and modeling of structural control systems of the different mineralizations of the deposit. Subsequently, a local field of preferential continuity directions is developed; thereby estimates will follow the local patterns of continuity of the deposit. The results of these works allow the deposits to operate under conciliations and mining plans with low error, since the addition of the structures brings the results closer to the geological reality of the deposit.
Optimal drilling mesh spacing to achieve a conciliation error
Geoinnova has developed an approach that characterizes the estimation error locally. In this way, it is possible to cover the different needs of drillhole samples for the deposit sectors, which implies an efficient use of the resources invested in the drilling campaigns.
Retro-conciliation of short and medium term models
Geoinnova has carried out automations of short and medium term models, which include a user interface based on well and drillhole information. This retro-conciliation aims at integrating all the information of the deposit, models update and generation of a daily ore control model that allows incorporating and updating the information in a timely manner.
Geotechnical parameter modeling
GeoInnova Consultores performs studies of geotechnical parameters of the deposits (RQD, GSI, etc.) in order to find ties with others deposit variables, and in this way draw local interpolations that allow modeling the geotechnical aspects of the deposits in a more efficient way.
Due Diligence and Valuation of Mining Assets
GeoInnova has participated with different clients in Due Diligence processes and valuation of mining assets for sale. In addition to other studies that seek to elucidate the maximum potential of different mining assets. One of the success stories was the acquisition of 50% of the Mt Holland project by SQM.