Integrated Process Management (IPM) at HVC


Wes Kitura, Teck - Highland Valley Copper

The operation and management of a large-scale mineral processing facility can be complex and challenging.  Integrated Process Management or IPM is a process management philosophy that provides a framework for how to do this and get the most out of your concentrator.  IPM is characterized by an obsession with INPUTS.  The rational is that if you identify, control and improve what you can directly control (process inputs) then production and performance (outputs) will logically improve.  Central to this approach is reducing process variation and as part of that focus, each crew, operator, supervisor and process engineer must agree to run the concentrator the same way.  Most of the systems put in place as part of IPM focus on this challenge. Teck’s Lead and Zinc Refinery in Trail has been using IPM successfully since the early 2000s.  Based on Trail’s experience, Highland Valley Copper (HVC) started the process of implementing IPM at its concentrator in early 2018 with the full roll of the system completed in April 2019. This presentation will describe the journey that HVC took to implement IPM, demonstrate the systems that have now been put in place and outline the benefits and improvements that have made.  We think IPM is a game changer for the operation of HVC’s concentrator and see it as a strong foundation from which to make a step change in performance.