High-efficiency Mining program

 
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Due to the volatility of commodity prices and the

decrease of ore grade, the mining industry is looking for cost-effective technical solutions to exploit remote resources and extend existing mining operations with lower grade ore resources. In response, the High-efficiency Mining (HEM) program and its collaborators improve, develop and commercialize practical technologies —diagnostics, separation and materials —and demonstrate the value of process integration specifically applied to gold, nickel, copper and oil sands.

The HEM program establishes co-investment opportunities for stakeholders along Canada's mining value chain to develop and deploy new technology to increase production at a lower cost. As an outcome, the program will enable increased savings and will help Canadian companies to manage the risks and costs associated with the introduction of innovative technologies into each stage of the mining process.

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Collaborate with us

Collaborate with us on strategic research projects to help de-risk your innovative ideas, reduce your start-up costs and accelerate your commercial development timelines.

 
Collaboration opportunities

NRC's High Efficiency Mining program establishes co‑investment opportunities for stakeholders along Canada's mining value chain to develop and deploy new technology to increase production at lower cost. We take a systems engineering approach, aligning high‑level user requirements of mining companies with the innovation capacity of their supply chains and the R&D investment priorities of leading research organizations and government departments.

We are actively looking to engage mining equipment and technology suppliers, systems integrators and mine operators in targeted projects to:

  • Optimize mining processes. This involves developing and improving real‑time monitoring and separation technologies that increase energy efficiency and production, supported by predictive modeling, techno‑economic and systems analysis to reduce the cost and risk of integration into mining processes.
  • Improve equipment durability. This means developing better material wear and corrosion management technologies and integrated predictive maintenance approaches that combine modeling and advanced sensing to reduce capital and operating costs.

Our collaborative model allows technology risks to be shared, driving innovation through the supply chain to strengthen the sustainability and competitiveness of Canada's mining sector. Multi‑partner R&D projects and consortia, such as the Mining Material Wear and Corrosion Consortium, and individual business arrangements are always negotiated to meet clearly defined client needs and market outcomes.

Collaborator benefits

NRC's competitive advantage lies in its multidisciplinary capabilities, drawing on decades of experience in adjacent aerospace, construction and defence markets to complement our expertise in energy and mining sectors. By sustaining technical competencies in emerging as well as applied sciences we are able to meet client needs as they advance along their technology roadmaps, from next generation solutions to market-ready deployment in the field.

NRC works with stakeholders to bring the right technologies to the right maturity level to meet today's mining sector challenges. By helping establish long‑term relationships of trust between suppliers, systems integrators and end users (mining companies) in a coordinated mining technology innovation strategy, we help to:

  • Raise the innovation game of companies along the mining value chain;
  • De‑risk integration and optimize processes;
  • Reduce operating costs and disruption;
  • Increase durability, productivity and energy efficiency;
  • Increase the viability of low grade ores and deeper deposits;
  • Help build strong Canadian supply chains;
  • Reduce mining sector vulnerability to commodity market cycles.
Technical and advisory services

NRC supports technology integration from prototyping to piloting to performance testing, integration and deployment in the field. Our High Efficiency Mining program draws on core capabilities in:

  • System and process engineering;
  • Material characterization and engineering, including separation technologies, wear and corrosion and tribology expertise;
  • Advanced sensing and instrumentation;
  • Multi‑scale modeling;
  • Techno‑economics.
Research facilities

Clients also gain access to specialized infrastructure and facilities including:

  • Powerful materials characterization and microscopy centres, including Scanning Electron Microscope (SEM), Transmission Electron Microscopy (TEM), and X‑ray diffraction (XRD);
  • Laser‑induced Breakdown Spectroscopy (LIBS) and laser‑ultrasonic labs;
  • Wear, corrosion and environmental testers and simulators;
  • Specialized modeling hardware and software.

Contact us

NRC engages clients on an individual basis and through consortia and other multi‑partner collaboration models. Contact us to find out how we can work together to increase mining production efficiency at lower cost.

Sevan Bedrossian, Program Leader
Telephone: 613-998-3992
Email: Sevan.Bedrossian@nrc-cnrc.gc.ca

Targeted industries

Mining companies (hard rock and oil sands), technology and service suppliers (materials, chemicals, process technology, diagnostics, IT, sensors, analytical labs), original equipment manufacturers (OEMs), system integrators, consulting and engineering firms.