Engineering and Mining Journal - Whether the market is copper, gold, nickel, iron ore, lead/zinc, PGM, diamonds or other commodities, E&MJ takes the lead in projecting trends, following development and reporting on the most efficient operating pr
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MARCH 2017 • E&MJ 55 www.e-mj.com OPERATING STRATEGIES cant packaging. Quite often, according to Total, a site may be using two or three oils covering similar applications, with slight- ly different specifi cations or pack sizes. It may be helpful to have an oil expert eval- uate the range of products used at a site and select the most appropriate product to cover as many applications as possible. Total's mining team said this can re- sult in savings up to 17% of total site oil cost, through savings in physical inven- tories, costs associated with handling, spoilage, theft, storage space and stock obsolescence. Standardize oil packaging – Do you really need the same product in pails, drums, Intermediate Bulk Containers (IBCs) and bulk? Too many options can result in increased costs and duplication of effort. A thorough look at where and how each pack size is being used and dis- pensed, and if a site could benefi t from broader standardization in packs, could simplify the ordering process as well as free up valuable storage space and re- duce working-capital cost. Avoid contamination – Maintaining clean oil is a key investment initiative for mining companies. Total suggests using contamination control techniques such as desiccant breathers on bulk and inter- mediate containers as well as fi ltration on bulk fl uid dispensing. The use of fi ltration on fl uid dispensing on IBC and Drums can also be applied. The benefi ts of sound contamination control in lubricants will extend the life of lubricated equipment and reduce overall maintenance costs. Have used oil analyzed – The aim of oil analysis is to get a "snapshot" of the condition of both the lubricant and the equipment at a given point in time. When carried out over a period of time, used-oil analysis allows predictive maintenance, which assists in planning maintenance operations at optimal intervals. It also al- lows users to optimize oil change frequen- cy, to avoid costly emergency repairs, and to increase equipment service life. Total's ANAC Laboratories perform over 200,000 diagnostics each year for mining companies and other automotive and in- dustrial customers. All that is required is to collect the oil sample at regular inter- vals (without having to stop the machine) and send it to Total's laboratory using the ANAC analysis kit. ANAC automatically sends a comprehensive report via email with the analysis of the sample. This re- port can also be viewed online. Have your lube supplier audit the op- eration – Total can provide oil specialists to assist clients in identifying areas of improvement that contribute to cost-sav- ing initiatives. For example, it's possible that replacing just one lubricant with a more appropriate product can contribute to the reduction of many different types of costs. These may include: • Purchase cost, • Maintenance cost, • Energy cost, • Fuel cost and • Waste oil cost. Use a FIFO approach for storing and using oil products – When, say, a 205-li- ter or 1,000-liter IBC has reached the end of its product shelf life, the use of that product can have detrimental effects on equipment. The product should be dis- carded — which brings increased cost. To- tal suggests a First-In-First-Out (FIFO) ap- proach to storage of oils on mining sites. Improving overall warehouse management of stored products as well as a FIFO ap- proach to product storage will help reduce these so-called "obsolescence" costs.