A breakthrough in hole depth measurement in open cut mining
4th June 2016 : For many drill and blast operations, the state of the art in hole depth measurement for blast holes is the dipping tape or tape measure. While this is not necessarily such a bad thing, the data that is collected is not easily recorded and shared. At best this data is entered into a tablet or PDA. These devices face many challenges in surviving the rigours of open cut mining. The dust, mud and chemicals present in drilling and blasting mean that the failure rates of these devices in often fairly high. In addition to this, the form factor does not allow them to be used easily by the same person who is doing the measurement of the hole depth. This is a process that has been crying out for optimisation.
Iguana Industrial Solutions is a provider of open cut mining data collection solutions based in Sydney, Australia. Their flagship hole dipper product is the benchm8 8550 automated hole dipping tool. This fits neatly into their product suite that allows the automated measurement of hole depth and water depth measurement and the subsequent easy access and transport of this data electronically.
The benchm8 8550 hole dipper in an automated hole dipping tool that uses a motor to drop a line down the blast hole. The line is retracted by the same motor and significantly reduces operator fatigue. This allow more blast holes to be dipped and the data to be more easily available for the drilling and blasting operations. The data is accessible by USB or even wirelessly via Bluetooth.
Blast loading can be optimised with the accurate blast hole depth and water depth measurement. This data can be used to better plan for blast loading with the optimal quantities and types of explosives. These can reduce the costs associated with the drill and blast but can also improve the yield with less wastage due to poor blasting processes. Also the fuel consumption of digging equipment can be reduced with good fragmentation from optimal drilling and blasting in the open pit mining operations.
Open cast mining is under significant pressure to reduce costs and increase yields. Having good hole depth data and accurate water depth measurement is the first step to achieve this. A hole dipper that optimises the hole dipping process provides a low cost and immediate improvement over conventional dipping tape methods with manual data capture or manual data entry.
Iguana Industrial Solutions is a technology provider with a customer centric focus on delivering solutions to optimise drilling and blasting in open cut mining.
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