Applications to the Crush It! Challenge will be assessed according to its performance for each of the proposal categories detailed in: Section 2.2 of the Crush It! Challenge Applicant’s Guide.

At the initial Application stage (Round 1), Challenge applicants are expected to complete each proposal category using any relevant evidence available, including any supporting data, test results, and/or analysis, as necessary. In the Detailed Project Proposal (Annex F), it is the responsibility of each applicant to make a clear and convincing case as to why their innovation meets or exceeds the expectations outlined for each proposal category. Applicants should also articulate how their innovation could be applied at an operational scale.

Each applicant is responsible to substantiate the anticipated result(s) of their innovation in each proposal category for the purposes of assessment by the Technical Review Committee and for review by the Crush It! Challenge Jury.

If available, a description of the ore(s) used for testing and in the intended operational implementation of the proposed innovation at an industrial scale should be included the Detailed Project Proposal (Annex F). Crush It! Applications will be evaluated based on their project methodology used and the ore(s) proposed by the applicant for testing (e.g., this may be outlined in #2 Project Description; #4 Methodology; and, #7 Uptake Potential and Scaleability).

The guide below provides supplementary information for Crush It! Challenge applicants to aid in the determination of anticipated energy reduction in Round 3:

Determining Energy Reduction (Round 3)

The grand prize winning innovation must seek to significantly reduce the total energy expended to crush and grind mined material in a mill as part of a mining operation.

To be successful in the Crush It! Challenge, applicants are challenged to prove an innovation, that when applied at an operational scale, produces a 20% reduction in energy required for crushing and grinding as compared to a pre-determined baseline. This 20% reduction goal is a guideline and not a requirement to be considered for the Crush It! Challenge.


IF your proposed innovation targets a reduction in the energy consumption of particle size reduction technologies and processes in an industry-standard processing mill…

Example innovations:

  • Improved ore sorting
  • Sensor technologies
  • Pre-conditioning methods
  • Recovery of waste energy
  • Novel crushing or grinding techniques
  • Mill optimization, AI, Machine Learning

Winning applicants in the Crush It! Challenge (Round 3) will be required to determine an energy consumption baseline reflective of industry-standard milling circuits that employ particle size reduction as part of the mineral liberation process. The baseline measure should be for the total quantity of energy consumed by the circuit to produce one tonne of ground ore.

This baseline measure will be the standard by which the energy reduction effectiveness of the proposed innovation is compared. For example, implementation of the proposed innovation should result in a percentage reduction in the energy required to produce one tonne of ground ore, as compared to the measured pre-implementation baseline, holding all other factors constant. Energy savings must correspond to net energy savings, including any additional energy consumed by supplementary equipment or steps added to the process.

When identifying your baseline, you should identify what was used for the applied innovation, for example:

  • Ore type
  • Ore Hardness
  • Initial and final particle size
  • Operating conditions (e.g., geographic location, geophysical characteristics, operating environment, scale, etc.)
  • Relevant conditions unique to the specific technology implementation.

The Crush It! Challenge encourages any innovation that can generate significant energy savings when applied to the crushing and grinding of ores applicable to a variety of conditions indicative of Canadian mining operations.

As a guideline, applicants should be prepared to demonstrate how their innovation would fare when applied to an ore within this approximate range:

  • JK Drop Weight of A*b < 35, and/or Bond Work Index of > 17-20 kWh/mt.
  • Suggested particle size for testing should be 80% passing 150 millimeters. Suggested particle size of the ground ore product following the test should be 80% passing 100 micrometres.

Size distribution may vary based on the specific innovation applied and intended operating conditions. This range is a guideline for the Crush It! Challenge and not a requirement to participate in the Challenge.


IF your proposed innovation targets a reduction in the energy consumption of industry-standard processing mills by eliminating or displacing the need for traditional crushing and grinding as part of the process of mineral liberation…

Example innovations:

  • Continuous mining
  • In-situ leaching
  • Genomics, bio-leaching
  • Smart blasting techniques
  • Coarse liberation circuit

In this case, the applicant is required to determine an energy consumption baseline for a mining operation using industry-standard comminution methods for mineral liberation. This requires a calculation of the anticipated percentage reduction in the total energy required in the processing circuit that would result from implementing their proposed innovation, compared with a mining operation using an industry standard flow sheet relevant to the operating conditions specific to the innovation outlined in the Crush It! Application.

Similar to Path 1, the Technical Review Committee and Crush It! Challenge Jury will evaluate how applicants demonstrate their anticipated energy savings and the project methodology used for any innovation submitted under Path 2.

Note that neither Path will be prioritized in the evaluation of Crush It! Applications. The best overall innovation that addresses Crush It! Challenge proposal categories will be selected, not necessarily the most transformative.