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Thinking Outside the Rocks: Using Hyperspectral Imaging to Locate Ore After a Blast

What if locating your ore post-blast, was as easy as flying a drone?

One of the biggest problems a mine faces is locating ore after a blast- particularly for narrow deposits with a good bit of exterior dilutions. Often times substantial ore movement is not properly (or not at all) monitored and accounted for. This can lead to incorrect ore classification, where high grade ore is mistakenly stockpiled as low grade or vice versa, low grade ore, is mistakenly sent for further processing. Once the ore is lost in the muck pile it could be mistakenly sent to a waste pile or diluted with tonnes of waste being processed as if it was ore.

The fix for this was to insert Blast Vector Indicator (BVI) and then later Blast Movement Monitors (BMMs) in the bore holes to get blasted with the bench. Then post blast, workers would walk the muck-pile with a detector to locate the BMMs and the ore they were embedded in.

However, what if instead of all that, you could simply fly a drone over the muck pile, take some readings and images and then within hours have a map with the location of all desired ore yields, their grade and the fragmentation reports?

Using Artificial Intelligence (AI) that is possible. Hyper-spectral imaging uses specialized sensors mounted to the bottom of a drone. The drone flies over the muck pile taking pictures and hyper-spectral images. Then that data is sent to an AI software platform, like Strayos, specifically designed for mines and blasters for processing within a few hours.

Strayos uses advanced AI- computer vision and data analytics- to analyse your data and generate industry standard reports that you can use immediately in the field. Even better, since its cloud based it can be accessed from anywhere by any device.

Your blaster finishes his blast, as soon as the dust clears your drone pilot flys the muckpile along an automated (or manual) route taking the images. The images are uploaded on the spot, from the field to the platform and the AI digs in. Within hours your team can access the report from the home office, site office, and muck pile and immediately start gathering the ore. The ore's location will be clearly delineated on the Strayos generated map along with quality notations, rock size distribution, size range, and muck-pile movement.

This instant feedback allows blasters to improve their next shot and minimize dilution.

Not good enough yet? Ok, pair the after shot data processing with a pre-blast modeling to truly take your blasting game to the next level. Add Strayos' Blast Design and Muck-pile Prediction AI along with its Fragmentation Prediction AI to your workflow to get the best yield possible. You fly a drone before the blast, capture a bunch of images, upload them to the software and the AI will generate interactive 3D models that your blasters can use to plan their shot before blasting. They can plan a shot based on desired muckpile movement and desired fragmentation. Then fly the drone again after the shot to verify all went as planned and locate the ore exactly.

Does that optimize your operations enough for you?


Check out our 2 Free E-books on AI applications for the drilling, blasting, and mining industries to see all the amazing advances that are available.
AI Guide for Drilling and Blasting
AI Guide for Mining

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