Gekko gets OLGA right for automation push


Staff reporter

Innovative Australian firm, Gekko Systems, has high hopes for the new iteration of its online gold analyser, or OLGA, which has emerged from literally years of work to “toughen up” the original Alpha design with enhanced control and integration features.

The privately-owned company behind internationally recognised compact, low-energy mineral processing plants says the OLGA Mk3 is ready to work effectively alongside other cornerstone products such as its carbon management system, Carbon Scout, to enable cost-effective real-time gold recovery optimisation for operators and even automation of carbon-in-leach (CIL) gold circuits.

That conversation is one Gekko management wants to have at the upcoming major PDAC mining event in Toronto, Canada.

“We believe the market to combine with our other products to automate CIL circuits could be huge,” Gekko’s global sales and solutions general manager, Nigel Grigg, told InvestMETS.com.

He said OLGA was the only real-time online measurement system purpose built for gold. CSIRO’s world-first Golden Eye lens technology, which Gekko is commercialising, measures gold grades down to 0.1ppm, as well as other elements, in slurries and solutions.

Feedback from early field installations gave the manufacturer guidance on making OLGA more robust. Units were used to measure gold grades in CIL leach circuit cyclone overflow, an electrowinning circuit, flotation feed, tails, and concentrate. A new multiplexing control feature means it can assess the gold content of up to four process streams by switching from stream to stream.

Gold grades can be measured in real-time versus up to two-day delays with conventional assay-based processes.

“The technology represents a significant step forward in the potential to automate gold leaching circuits,” Grigg said.

“We are really excited about these new design elements which will improve value and returns for our clients as well as improve ease of operation.

“Operating management [can] respond immediately if there is a gold excursion or if the data provides other insights into plant trends.

“This is a breakthrough technology which is now even more affordable and will deliver higher yields in processing plants.”

The new OLGA also has a dedicated sample feed line that is said to remove the chance of cross-contamination while it samples large stream volumes.

Additional sample points can be used for ad-hoc samples, providing flexibility and a batch-analysis capability that takes out the requirement for other sampling systems.

Grigg said the maturing of OLGA, including internal iteration, had been a process but the new commercial version was fit for purpose and for integration with products such as Carbon Scout.

“We are all systems go right now,” he said.

 

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