10 June 2016
One key factor in keeping the mines running is the need to recognize tectonic disturbances or ore body discontinuations ahead of the ore samples. In 2009 one of the mines decided to invest in one complete drilling kit (core drilling rig and consumables) to make operations more efficient and less expensive, by drilling their own net of holes to recover core samples.
Atlas Copco was selected as supplier of choice based on the reputation of their products and service. The Diamec 262 was recommended, due to the underground conditions and planned work. The drilling rig was modified to a flameproof version to meet ATEX regulations for all underground exploration machinery in the mine. A package of consumables with O-Series ITH and Excore diamond tools completed the delivery.
Foreman Jan Jakubowicz’s experience with surface and underground drilling made him the best candidate from KGHM Rudna mine to test and introduce new equipment at the mine. At the very beginning Atlas Copco equipment and tools gave superior performance compared to previous contractors operations. Production jumped up from 6 m per shift to 15 m best results. This is exceptional as effective drilling time is 3 – 3,5 hr per shift, due to extensive underground travelling to the drill site.
Another positive surprise for the mine was the consumption of drill bits. Previously the bit had to be changed every 100 – 150 m and now the average for the Excore BO 5-7 ECF13 8ww bit is 700 m with good penetration rate 20 – 25 cm/min in competent dolomite formation. The best result achieved with one single Excore 5 – 7 bit is 1500 m.
"“Today the cost of diamond tools become penny per drilled meter. From the very beginning all operational cost for new equipment were precicely controlled to prove the investment was correct. We are very happy with the results.”"