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Archive for the ‘Waste Rock’ Category

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There is still time to join us for the upcoming EduMine webcast Advanced Tailings and Mine Waste Facility Design, Operation, and Closure.  Here is the link to the course.

Even if you have taken other courses before conferences, or the other EduMine webcast on Introduction to Tailings, or our previous Advanced Tailings courses, I know you will find interesting and exciting information, perspectives, practices, and case histories in this new course.

We have completely renovated the materials.  First we feature, on each of the three days of the webcast, a series of talks by Christian Kujawa, Robert Cooke, and Ian Hutchison on these topics:

  • Conventional tailings.
  • Thickened tailings.
  • Filter pressed tailings.

Christian and Robert are with Paterson and Cooke—they are leading consultants in making, transporting, and distributing tailings.  They have put together a great series of presentations on thickeners, cyclones, pipes conveyors, and the details of making and working with thickened, paste, and filtered tailings.  Their presentations will put you at the cutting edge of technology and practice in the production, transport, and distribution of all types of tailings.

Ian Hutchison is with SLR—he and his colleagues are experts in the design, construction, operation, and closure of tailings facilities.  They have assembled a suite of new case histories from North America, Australia, and South Africa.  Most are new to me—and I follow the topic pretty carefully.

I will come in from time to time to talk of theses new topics:

  • Risk assessment and decision-making for tailings management.
  • Dam safety inspections and evaluations.
  • Case histories on new project that I am working on–I am particularly proud that Nyrstar are permitting me to talk of closure planning for the Myra Falls mine here in BC.

In addition I will present summaries of the best new papers to be presented at the upcoming conference Paste 2014.  I have read all the papers and here I present a preview of those that impressed me most.  Time permitting, I will also talk about papers to be presented next week in Brazil at the conference on Mine Closure.

Lawrence Charlebois will spend an hour or so on that most difficult set of tailings topics, namely rheology, beaching, and Optimized Seasonal Deposition of polymer amended tailings.  For polymer amendment works.  I know that.  It just needs a bit of bold field application and the oil sands folk will be seen as heroes.

In short, this is a great opportunity to come up to speed with the newest & best in tailings.  Come join us and advance your knowledge & career by hearing from the most knowledgeable & experienced in the field.  I look forward to meeting & talking with you.  And it is a hell-of-a-lot cheaper than those expensive conferences where you fall asleep through dull presentations by amateurs.

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Spent today in a course on Covers in Cold Climates.  The course is part of the seminar to follow tomorrow and Wednesday on the same topics.  Arranged by InfoMine, it is being held in Whistler, which is a nice, but not spectacular place to have a conference—I prefer Banff or Vancouver.   For the Fairmont Chateau Whistler is a pale reflection of those other grand hotels with the Fairmont name: a bland and ugly exterior that replicates in cheap detail the features of the hotel in Vancouver that it tries to emulate. (more…)

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It is snowing in Vancouver.  Nothing sticking to the roads, but the trees are white and beautiful.  Nothing much to do outside or inside for that matter, so just  a few thoughts on mine waste disposal facility covers.

Slimes & Cement

The best cover is no cover.  If you can use the upper tailings or waste rock as the as the growth medium in which a stand of climax vegetation will flourish, you have the best cover. (more…)

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Every so often a presentation at a conference takes your breath away and leaves you amazed at the ability of the speaker and their colleagues. This happened today as a sat listening to Joel Carrasco of Ausenco present on a paper entitled Development of an integrated mine waste management plan of the metates gold-silver project, Durango and Sinaloa States, Mexico.   To get the paper, you will have to get the proceedings of the Tailings and Mine Waste Management 2013 conference or in due course download the presentation that I refer to from the website of the conference–I told it will take week or two to load pdfs of the presentations. (more…)

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In addition to blogging, I consult to the mining industry.  And I work with Andy Robertson who also owns InfoMine to promote conferences — something InfoMine has decided to undertake in a big way. A few months ago, Andy asked me what topic I thought would make for a good conference.  A short reflection and I suggested geosynthetics in mining.   Way back in 1974 or thereabouts, I became familiar with geosynthetics when i used Bidim to make the base of a tailings facility in South Africa.  I became very familiar with geosynthetics about five years ago when Andy and I suggested geotextiles and geogrid placed on frozen tailings for the Suncor Pond 5 cover base.  In between, I have designed geogrid reinforced slopes, built reinforced walls, placed covers and liners, and read about geosynthetics.  (more…)

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You remember Jill.  She is the philosophy major who is employed by an innovative mining company, MMC, to oversee risk management of the mining company’s geowaste facilities including the tailings, waste rock, and heap leach facilities. (more…)

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Underground is the essence of mining.  As a kid of perhaps ten-years old, my father took me a mile down a shaft of the mine where he worked as a mine captain.  Somewhat fearful, I followed him close into the vast space of metal that was the cage.  Down we sped to great noise for what seemed an eternity.  Water seeped and dripped and gushed everywhere.  All was wet.  At last we slowed, stopped, and the great metal doors clanged open.  We emerged into a great hall with dark-rock walls and soaring ceiling.  Everywhere there was metal: rails, ropes, tools, and cocopans. (more…)

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Browsing the web earlier this week I came across the site of the South African Department of Water Affairs.  There I found the following Best Practice Guidelines relevant to mine water management: (more…)

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On a series of flight to and from a distant mine, I read a great deal on the history and manufacture of the pencil.  The book I read is called The Pencil and is by Henry Petroski a professor of civil engineering at Duke University.  He writes regularly for the American Scientist; I follow his writings there and in his many other books on the design process in engineering. (more…)

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Management of mine waters is the topic of the day.  Conferences crop up like springs in a wet place.  Here are those I find for 2013.  There are probably many more being planned for 2014. (more…)

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