Blog: Aggregate Matters
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Q&A: Bruno simulation software for optimizing the aggregate production processes

How to build an optimal aggregate production process? There is no one simple answer to this question, as for some optimal means low operating costs and for others it means as little equipment as possible. However, all share the same number one goal: to be able to produce exactly what their customers need. We chatted with our expert Saku Pursio, head of Bruno department, about how our simulation software can help customers select the right equipment.

Q1: In short, what is Bruno about?

Bruno is an intuitive software program for simulating the aggregate production process and it includes all the required Metso equipment: feeders, crushers and screens. The user enters basic feed material and machinery data into the process and the software predicts how the process will perform. This way, the customer can determine the most optimal process for each specific need. For more about the history and basics of Bruno, go to my earlier blog post.

Q2: What is the main benefit of using Bruno?

An aggregate crushing and screening process needs adjustment and changes for various reasons, such as too high production costs or poor product quality. With Bruno, the user can test suggested changes to find out if they have the desired effect without unintentionally compromising the performance some other way. It is much cheaper to spend a few extra hours at your desk making a feasible plan, instead of starting to make potentially costly changes blindfolded.

Q3: Could you describe a scenario that showcases the value of Bruno?

Imagine that you have selected, bought and set equipment for your plant and you are ready to get going. Once the process has started, you notice that the crusher feed turns out to include larger rocks than expected, too large for the crusher to process. The difference isn’t huge necessarily, but it is significant. In that case, you need to reline the crusher chamber, which causes a delay in start-up. If Bruno had been used, we could have estimated the feed size with high accuracy and prevented the issue from emerging in the first place.

On the other hand, it might be that production targets change and the current setup doesn’t fit the needs anymore. With Bruno, the customer can quickly and easily find out how to reset the process flow. In addition to resetting the process flow, Bruno offers the possibility to try new equipment. For example, in certain applications it might be effective to change the HP crusher to a GP crusher. One real life case was when Bruno helped Riverbend to choose the equipment best suited to their needs

One of the most common reasons why a plant doesn’t deliver as expected is the fact that rock type is not properly taken into consideration. We analyze a rock sample from the customer site to determine its specific characteristics and feed this information into Bruno. For instance, high abrasiveness can cause unexpectedly short wear part lifetime, which increases downtime and operating costs.

Q4: What makes Bruno so accurate?

Accuracy comes from information that has been gathered from measuring real equipment, exactly the same ones used by our customers in their quarries. Almost all our quotations include a Bruno process flowchart as a standard feature and each case increases the database. This has been going on ever since Bruno was developed in 1994 and today there are 8500 users in 112 countries, literally in all four corners of the world.

There is no definitive right or wrong answer for any process – there can be several equally good ones. With Bruno, those scenarios can be compared and so it ultimately comes down to customers deciding what they wish to emphasize in their production processes.

Screen capture of Bruno simulation software in use.

Screen capture of a Bruno flowsheet. The triangles represent product piles, and the percentages inside tell you how the plant production is distributed.The percentage on a Lokotrack shows crusher loading. The process is designed to maximize the production tonnage.

 


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