Water Systems for Distributing Cooling in Deep South African Gold Mines
Organization: The Australasian Institute of Mining and Metallurgy
Jan 1, 1988
The average installed refrigeration capacity on South African gold mines has increased by about eighteen per cent annually for the past 15 years; both the number of installations and their duties have increased. One consequence of these large refrigeration installations is that careful attention must be paid to the system for distributing cold water. In these distribution systems, devices which minimize the temperature rise of the water delivered to the underground workings and which also reduce the pumping requirements for returning the water back to surface are used. In this paper the suitability of these various devices are examined and with the aid of a specially developed computer program their optimum operating conditions are determined. In addition the optimum combination of surface and underground refrigeration plants is examined for a hypothetical mine at various depths and the importance of pump efficiency on total distribution costs is discussed.