Grinding Ball Charger

The AutoCharge™ system, maintains a constant grinding ball load which prevents unnecessary power draft variations and destructive balls.

  • AutoCharge

"Slug-charging" several tons of grinding balls at 12-hour or 24-hour time intervals will cause unnecessary power draft variations and may also result in destructive ball / shell impacts. Automatic ball charging equipment continuously meters grinding balls into the mill according to control parameters such as power draft, ball wear speed, or operating hours. This practice minimizes wear of both grinding media and liners due to impact and maximizes grinding capacity through consistent ball and ore loading at maximum power draft.

FLSmidth AutoCharge equipment has been proven internationally to streamline the single-size recharge practice for ball sizes from 2.5” (63mm) to 6.0” (152mm) and to optimize milling performance in terms of mill throughput (tons/hr), power efficiency (kwh/t/ophr) and ball consumption (lbs/ton).

  • USA: Fairbanks Gold, BHP-Pinto Valley
  • Canada: MOLY-COP Canada, TeckCominco - Trail
  • Guatemala: Montana Exploradora de Guatemala
  • India: Hindustan Zinc
  • Indonesia: PT Freeport
  • Russian Federation: Polius Project

The AutoCharge feeder continuously charges balls from the storage bin to the mill. The feeder mechanism is indexed 1/8 turn by each extension of the air cylinder and a one-way clutch and brake arrangement. As the feed wheel turns, it picks up balls in each flight of the feed wheel. When the balls pass top center of the wheel, they roll off the wheel into the counting chute, then drop directly into the mill feed stream.

The AutoCharge standard counter is based on Programmable Controller I/O accessed either locally or from the DCS. Each ball rolls through the counting chute, activating a mechanical limit switch which signals the counter, integral with the controller function. Each ball feeder / counter system is designed to accept a narrow range of ball diameters and should not be used to charge balls of mixed sizes.

The AutoCharge weight-based counter is particularly applicable to small ball sizes (25 – 63mm) and / or a ball recharge practice which includes multiple sizes. The weight-based accounting system is also based on Programmable Controller I/O accessed either locally or from the DCS.

The AutoCharge feeder / counter system requires 120 - 240 VAC 1 phase 50/60 Hz 15 Amp electrical power, and 90 psi compressed air with an approximate flow of one cubic foot per minute. The Client is responsible to provide convenient connection to electrical power and compressed air, as specified, as well as any connection to the DCS or other control system.

The AutoCharge Ball Bin may be sized in accordance with operation-specific constraints, including the method of ball transfer, available space and clearance.