Goldcorp invests $1 million in Kore Geosystems
2017 Disrupt Mining co-winner on track to announce first of several drillhole data collection and analysis solutions this year
Kore Geosystems, a Toronto-based geoscience service company and co-winner of the Disrupt Mining competition in March 2017, recently celebrated a $1 million investment from Goldcorp and plans to announce the first of several drillhole data and analysis solutions this year.
“We want to give our clients the decision-making intelligence much faster than what’s happening currently,” said Vince Gerrie, president, Kore Geosystems. “The status quo for the mining industry is you drill a hole, you get the rock sample, you send it off to a lab, it takes a long time and you come up with a model months and months after the drilling occurs.”
Already skilled in applying data analytics, artificial intelligence and machine learning for mining companies in Canada and around the world, Kore Geosystems is now developing sensors and instruments to capture data from the drillhole.
It’s not just geologists who will benefit, said Gerrie.
“We can also learn more about the mechanical rock properties, how the material can be processed through a mill, and what kind of recoveries can be achieved. We believe there are a number of problems that can be solved with the different datasets.”
Goldcorp’s investment as a minority equity partner “has acted as a catalyst to further some of these plans that we have, so just in the last few months, we really got going on the development of the hardware,” said Chris Drielsma, Kore Geosystems senior advisor and technical director.
Early, deposit-wide data about rock properties can assist mine planners who have to make important decisions about ground support. It can also assist engineers and metallurgists who will be dealing with the rock in the mill.
“Usually, the data that a metallurgist will work with is relatively sparse, whereas the work that we’re doing will give you thousands or millions of data points to map the variability across a deposit. That variability is important to take into account for mill performance,” said Drielsma.
“Now, you build a $100 million mill and you’re basing it on a small number of measurements for grindability and hardness, but deposits are quite variable. The reason they don’t have many data points is because the tests are very expensive. So, sometimes, the rock coming out of the ground doesn’t correspond with what the mill was designed for.
More detailed measurements would prevent that from happening.”
The technology Kore Geosystems is developing could also allow mining companies to use less expensive drilling techniques because core drilling is the most expensive kind of drilling, said Drielsma.
“If you can take those measurements downhole, you can decrease your drilling costs and increase the speed of drilling while getting the same information, but that’s a little bit down the road.”
The technology is most beneficial in the early stages of exploration because “you can benefit from understanding things sooner,” said Gerrie. “You’ll have a better model to begin with, but the same technology can also be deployed in an active mining operation during infill drilling to improve the understanding of the deposit.”
Finalists for the second annual Goldcorp-sponsored Disrupt Mining competition will pitch their innovations to a “shark-type” panel of judges and more than 1,000 mining executives March 4 at the Rebel Entertainment Complex in Toronto.
Up for grabs is a $1 million capital opportunity for this year’s winner. For tickets and more information, go to http://www.disruptmining.com.