Drill and blast process optimisation is the name of the game in reducing costs and improving the yield in open cut mining. Key parameters such as the hole depth of the blast hole and accurate water depth measurement allow the drilling and blasting process to be optimised. The cost effective selection of explosives and accurate blast loading are pathways to improving overall yield and open cast mining efficiency.
Working with the right technology partner
There is an understandable desire on the part of large technology suppliers to encourage a lock in for their products in the drilling and blasting operations. When this works in sympathy with the best outcomes for the drill and blast operations, this is a win – win scenario. However when the technology is a closed system and prevents the optimal flow of data, open cut mining operations must question their choice of partners. There is increasing value in open data exchange across the tools that are used in open pit mining. This data belongs to the customer and the customer rightly should expect to be able to use this data to optimise their drill and blast operations.
If the dipping tape represents the best that can be done in hole dipping than the open cast mining operation is missing out on the optimal drilling and blasting processes. The use of an automated hole dipper that can record hole depth and water depth measurement electronically provides an opportunity to optimise blast loading. Solution providers in open cut mining should not be putting up walls in this data flow but rather should be actively providing open interfaces for allowing hole dipping data to be fed back into designs to optimise the blast loading process.
Iguana Industrial Solutions is a provider of open technology solutions to the drill and blast industry. Tools such as the benchm8 8550 hole dipper allow hole depth data and water depth measurement to be captured and easily exported electronically into other systems. This approach works to reduce the distance between the technology islands that exist on most open cut mining sites. Data exchange via JSON or XML or direct database access are all possible. In most cases the limiting factor is the availability of end points in the solutions provided by the more established technology providers who are keen on maintaining a lock in with the open pit mining processes.
Author – bio :
Starting out in electronics manufacturing and moving through to heavier industry, the author has a passion for examining the data flow in industries and how these flows often represent targets for process improvement that are overlooked in traditional optimisation strategies.