Dewatering Investigation at Koolan Island

Organization: The Australasian Institute of Mining and Metallurgy
Pages: 10
Publication Date: Jan 1, 1986
BHP Minerals Ltd operates an open cut iron ore mining operation on Koolan Island, off the coast north of Derby in the Kimberley region of Western Australia. The mine comprises a number of pits, the largest of which is situated adjacent to the coast on the southern side of the island. The lowest bench is currently at RL +2 m, and the mine has planned ultimate depth of RL -82 m. Mining has already extended below the pre-existing water table level, and below mean sea level. In 1984, an extensive program of drilling, geophysics and test pumping was instigated to evaluate the aquifer hydraulic properties and the nature of the groundwater flow regime. With the aid of computer modelling, predictions have been made of the likely dewatering and depressurization requirements, and a conceptual pumping and drainage system has been designed.
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