Optimizing The Life Of Ore Passes In A Deep-Level Gold Mine

Brenchley, P. R.
Organization: The Southern African Institute of Mining and Metallurgy
Pages: 6
Publication Date: Jan 1, 2006
Main ore pass systems should last the life of a mine, and too often expensive and hazardous remedial measures are required to repair a damaged ore pass in an attempt to extend its life. In order to maximize the life expectancy of all ore passes at Moab Khotsong, ?wearing blocks? and ?softer support? systems, combined with basic rock engineering principles, have been implemented. Failure of an ore pass can have severe financial implications, both indirectly because the ore pass cannot deliver the broken rock either from level to level or directly in the shaft ore pass system to the required level for tramming to take place, and directly due to the cost of the repair work that is required. Several factors need to betaken into consideration so that production interruptions are eliminated or minimized. Investigations of damaged ore passes at Moab Khotsong and surrounding mines revealed some interesting mechanisms of damage, and some innovative methods of reducing or eliminating the damage have been implemented at Moab Khotsong. The system design was based on 30 years, experience in main shaft rock passes. The design was to counteract scaling, hang-ups and dust problems associated with main rock passes, and the objective was to increase the life of rockpasses. These problems, including the initial design aspects to try and eliminate the repair measures, are discussed in detail.
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