The blending procedure, selecting from various kinds of zinc-bearing materials containing different contents of components and determining their mixing ratios, is the first step in the hydrometallurgical zinc process. Whenever a setup takes place to change the selection of materials or their ratios in the blending process, the setup itself and the adjustments required in the subsequent processes incur cost, time, and effort. Reducing the number of setups by keeping the blending ratios of the selected materials for the longest possible period is critical for consistent operation and processing and, thus, for assuring the quality of the final zinc product. In this article, we formulate a mixed integer programming model for the blending schedule that minimizes the number of setups over a planning horizon, given the constraints on the contents of components and the daily schedules of material supply and zinc production. Also, we propose an efficient heuristic, which provides a solution of good quality within reasonable time bounds. The applicability and efficiency of the model along with its heuristic are verified through simulation experiments as well as the model's application to a real zinc refinery.
|Number of pages
|Metallurgical and Materials Transactions B: Process Metallurgy and Materials Processing Science
|Published - 2008 Dec
Bibliographical noteFunding Information:
This work was supported by the Second Brain Korea 21 Project of the Ministry of Education, Science and Technology, Korea. We greatly appreciate the valuable comments of the review committee.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Condensed Matter Physics
- Mechanics of Materials
- Metals and Alloys
- Materials Chemistry