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|In the minerals industry allocating capital for setting up a new project or for upgrading an existing facility usually requires that a compromise be found between the initial cost of equipment, its operating performance and on-going operating costs. To maximise the return on the investment usually requires that various possible combinations and layouts of equipment be assessed. This task is both difficult and time consuming. Computer simulation can be used as a means of determining the expected operating performance of a range of alternate equipment configurations. Simulation is a particularly important technique for analysis as it is one of the few approaches that allows the analyst to take into account the variability inherent in a mining process. While computer simulation is a well established technique its use, until recent years, has been limited to large organisations with access to substantial computing facilities. However, with the current availability of low cost computing platforms combined with easily understood animated displays, simulation is now becoming more widely used across the industry.|