May 17, 2020

[VIDEO] Second Largest Excavated Hole in the World - Mir Diamond Mine

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Mine site
Operations
Mir diamond mine
Admin
1 min
[VIDEO] Second Largest Excavated Hole in the World - Mir Diamond Mine
What started out as a small discovery in 1955 by Soviet geologists has transformed into one of the largest excavated holes the world has ever seen.The o...

What started out as a small discovery in 1955 by Soviet geologists has transformed into one of the largest excavated holes the world has ever seen.

The open-pit Mir mine, located in Eastern Siberia, was once one of the largest diamond mines on earth, reaching depths of 1,722-feet and stretching 3,900-feet in diameter.

The former mine began production in 1957 and lasted 44 years until it was permanently closed in June 2001. During its peak years of operation, the mine produced 10 million carats of diamond annually. The Mir mine was originally owned by the USSR until the 1990s when it was operated by the Sakha diamond company. Later, the mine was operated by Alrosa, the largest diamond producing company in Russia.

Over time the history of the Mir mine has reached mythical proportion. The government had to restrict airspace above the mine because of alleged incidents of helicopters falling due to air temperature differences and unexpected currents.

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May 13, 2021

BHP, Rio Tinto & Vale launch Charge On Innovation Challenge

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Vale
Rio Tinto
Charge On Innovation Challenge
3 min
BHP, Rio Tinto & Vale launch 'Charge On' Innovation Challenge - a competition for tech innovators to reduce truck emissions via electrification

Mining giants BHP, Vale and Rio Tinto have launched the 'Charge On' Innovation Challenge to solve one of the biggest challenges the industry faces today - decarbonising mining operations.

'Charge On' Innovation Challenge

In partnership with Austmine, Australia's leading mining equipment, technology and services industry association, founding patrons BHP, Vale and Rio Tinto have launched the competition to encourage technology innovators to develop new concepts for large-scale haul truck electrification systems. The main goal is cutting emissions from surface mining operations.

“The mining industry needs to be at the forefront of tackling the climate challenge. The Charge On Innovation Challenge is a great example of the current collaborative work being done by the mining industry and mobile equipment manufacturers to decarbonise mining fleets,” the trio said in a media statement.

“In addition to providing a zero-carbon energy source, the conversion of mobile mining equipment to battery-electric can potentially unlock value, as electric motors have fewer moving parts when compared to standard equipment.”

A number of non-traditional mining sector vendors are actively developing technologies that can assist in mine electrification. By submitting a Challenge to the market, the Patrons of Charge On expect to:

  • Demonstrate there is an emerging market for charging solutions in mining
  • Accelerate commercialization of solutions
  • Indicate to suppliers, the mining industry seeks interoperable solutions
  • Maintain multiple actors and competition in the supply chain
  • Integrate innovations from other sectors into the mining sector

"We expect some solutions identified in the Challenge could provide propulsion to existing diesel-electric trucks. This may present a pathway to early implementation for dynamic charging solutions," the trio said.

Charge On

Paris Agreement

Found patrons BHP, Vale and Rio Tinto are pledging their commitment to fighting climate change:

"The mining industry has an important role to reduce emissions and do our part to achieve the Paris Agreement goals to limit the impacts of climate change."

The Charge On Innovation Challenge asks vendors to present interoperable solutions that can safely deliver electricity to large battery-electric off-road haul trucks in a way that maintains or improves current productivity levels. Specifically, mechanisms capable of delivering in the order of 400kWh of electricity to each truck within a haul cycle (ie load, travel, dump, return, queue). The delivered electricity is to charge a battery, and if applicable directly propel the truck.

Austmine CEO Christine Gibbs Stewart commented: “We expect the Challenge will attract companies from a broad range of sectors including mining, automotive, aerospace, agriculture, and defence to deliver selected charging concepts to create a standard product that can interface with all trucks."

More information about the challenge will be released on May 18.

Electrification

The competition echoes growing efforts being made across the industry to tackle emmissions and promote electrification. In march this year, the Electric Mine Consortium was launched. It's founding members include Gold Fields, Dassualt Systemes and Sandvik who pledged their commitment to decarbonising mining operations.

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