Sepro wins prize for technology designed to limit water use

Foresight Canada and the Mining Association of British Columbia (MABC) have revealed the winner of the Mining Innovation Challenge: Reducing Water Use, following the […]
Sepro’s water saving peristaltic pumps won the MABC challenge. Credit: Sepro Mixing and Pumping

Foresight Canada and the Mining Association of British Columbia (MABC) have revealed the winner of the Mining Innovation Challenge: Reducing Water Use, following the competition's launch late last year. The challenge sought solutions to reduce water use intensity at operating B.C. mines, with the winner receiving a $150,000 prize and a potential opportunity to pilot the technology if there is an appropriate fit with a mine.

After a rigorous two stage evaluation process, Langley, B.C.-based Sepro Mixing and Pumping won with its large-scale linear fluid-driven peristaltic pump. This technology is designed to limit water waste for slurry liquefaction and enable tailings to be delivered to a storage facility with much higher density than currently possible. It also allows water to be reclaimed for use at the concentrator and will enable more sustainable tailings storage techniques. Pilot opportunities are being explored for this technology.

"Congratulations to Sepro Mixing and Pumping Ltd., and all the finalists in this challenge. By connecting corporate leaders facing sustainability hurdles with market-ready cleantech innovators, we can accelerate Canada's path to a green economy. Sepro's innovation could have enormous environmental and economic benefits for Canada's mining sector and beyond," Jeanette Jackson, CEO of Foresight Canada, stated in a media release.

"We believe we have achieved a breakthrough in peristaltic pumping that will substantially reduce the amount of water taken from the environment for mineral processing and allow construction of safer tailings storage facilities at lower cost than previously achievable. The recognition from winning this prize will be very helpful in establishing a beta site. We are hopeful the credibility gained will allow us to advance the schedule for field trials by at least one year," Steve McAlister, director of Sepro Mixing and Pumping, added.

Special mention also went to finalist and Foresight alumni 2S Water for its AquaValid sensor. This innovative solution offers real-time data collection of metal concentrations in water in order to increase water reuse and reduce freshwater consumption. Other competition finalists were Envirobay, Forward Water Technologies, Reveau Technologies and Solutions.

Evaluation was based on a combination of technology readiness, technical excellence, innovation, additional impact, and resources and implementation plan. PwC was the fairness evaluator for the challenge.

More information can be found by visiting MABC or Foresight Canada's website.

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