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KSB – open pit dewatering in mining calls for sturdy, reliable and environment friendly pumps

Water is present in all places in mining and its control varies according to its position within the mining processes. In a current in-depth article by pumps major KSB, the company outlines how this in turn influences the selection of technologies used in pumping water. “Alongside the safe supply and recovery of process water is the challenge of eradicating floor water. Process water and groundwater contain abrasive and corrosive components in various portions which have an adverse have an effect on on pump performance and life. Working situations, distant places, varying temperature ranges and the lack of electric energy are also highly influential elements.”
The copper mines in Chile and the iron ore mines in Western Australia could additionally be many hundreds of miles apart, however these mining operations still require dewatering and the secure disposal of doubtless contaminated water. “The same can be stated of the coal mines of Mozambique and the silver mines of Mexico. What all of them have in widespread is a requirement for environment friendly and efficient water and slurry pumps. Well-matched solutions assist to maximise the longevity and efficiency of the system and likewise optimise cost-performance ratios, all attributes fulfilled by KSB’s Hard Rock Mining Division.”
The changing face of mining
The search for more uncommon and valuable minerals and metals has opened up mining in international locations and areas where beforehand the business was small scale or non-existent. Consequently, mining corporations and tools manufacturers have had to develop new strategies and merchandise. And with the most important mining corporations having operations in many world areas, becoming a most well-liked equipment supplier is important. “The dewatering market is slowly shifting from a pure CAPEX perspective to an more and more OPEX perspective,” reviews Brett Lewis, Mining Manager at KSB Australia. “This is particularly true for the massive mines that understand that poorly designed equipment that regularly fails, causes a significant improve in alternative and servicing cost. Some mining companies at the second are committing to a carbon neutral goal within the subsequent 20 to 30 years, so are focussing on high effectivity equipment. They want to part out diesel reliance by connecting most bores to their local electrical grid.”
KSB says it’s aware that mining firms are recording pump efficiency and are accumulating data to compare manufacturers and better rank their qualities or deficiencies. “This is good news for KSB as the corporate is dedicated to delivering excessive reliability and efficiency pumps, so helping to minimize back the carbon footprint of mining dewatering operations.
Is there a ‘one-fits-all’ pump solution?
KSB says the answer to it is a resounding ‘no’, however “by sharing experiences between workplaces and likewise frequently working with the same international mining corporations, KSB has been in a position to develop appropriate options. KSB’s involvement within the iron ore industries in Brazil and Australia demonstrate two different approaches to dewatering, both employing vertical multi-stage pumps.”
In Brazil’s Minas Gerais State open pit iron ore mines excessive ground water, monsoons and underground lakes are issues. To maintain continuous production water needs to be pumped to a dewatering lake which has a dynamic water stage that have to be raised two or three times a year. KSB Brazil’s solution is a floating station fitted with KSB vertical turbine B pumps positioned over a pontoon (Fig.1). The pontoon rises and falls with adjustments within the water level so there is no need for the pumps to be repositioned. This ends in cost-savings to the customer. After 20 successful years it has become the standard for this kind of equipment in South America.
“The floating station supporting the pumps over the pontoon delivers the move fee requested by the customer,” explains Jardel Ribeiro, Sales Manager, KSB Brazil. “Sometimes the pumps, high power motors and associated equipment ends in the size of the floating station being increased. Stabilizing equipment that weighs greater than 200 t requires plenty of planning, in addition to the challenge of constructing a system in such a distant space.”
Boreholes in Australia
In the Pilbara Region of Western Australia iron ore is mined in a quantity of areas around the Chichester hub zone, an area between 5 and 9 km wide and 80 km long. The mineral deposit sits between ninety m and 117 m below the floor. With the groundwater and water table often replenished in wet seasons and cyclones adding to the inundation, more than 75% of the iron ore is under the water table. If an excessive amount of water mixes with iron ore, it becomes low grade and unsuitable for export, which results in massive income losses. Also, surface dewatering processes are extraordinarily expensive if the water is very excessive.
The accepted dewatering process inside the region is to pump the water out by way of boreholes. However, this isn’t without its challenges. High water temperatures and excessive salinity end in extreme corrosion, whilst iron micro organism can grow on motors which prevent efficient motor cooling. The presence of fuel is a continuing threat in some areas as this causes gas lock on the impellers resulting in heavy vibrations, which places a great strain on the motor, loss of circulate fee and motor failure.
This signifies that standard off-the-shelf products are not at all times suitable and the incidence of failures is excessive. Typically, most bore pumps fail inside 12 months, and sometimes only some weeks. At its Hope Valley facility in Western Australia, KSB supplies mine operators with its UPA multistage borehole pump, customised to withstand site circumstances. Although เกจวัดแรงดันดิจิตอล than its rivals, the UPA has been proven to deliver a considerably longer working life and lowered prices of ownership. KSB’s proprietary technology that inhibits the expansion of iron micro organism makes the UPA a winner.
Trailer mounted units
In Africa the surroundings and minerals being mined require revolutionary approaches to dewatering. In the Katanga Province of the Democratic Republic of Congo, home to several open reduce and underground copper mines wet seasons wreak flooding havoc. Here, KSB is delivering a quantity of different pumping options involving both UPA Z borehole pumps and surface-mounted Omega pumps. “To stop mining operations from being shut down, a fast localised response is required,” says Rob Bond, Area Manager Mining-Sub-Saharan Africa. “Our solution has been to produce Omega pumps mounted on tough terrain trailers. We supply a complete package made up of the pump, engine/motor, couplings, gearbox, hydraulic drives and auxiliary gear including vacuum pump, management panels, displays and so on that delivers high head pumping.”
A related resolution is also offered for the open solid Moatize coal mine in Mozambique the place the water ranges must stay low for steady manufacturing reliability. Whilst borehole pumps supply good reliability on a constant foundation, when the wet season starts, more resources are in demand KSB SA provides skid-mounted Omega units. To date, KSB SA has provided 152 items and all are working reliably.
Latin America
In Mexico’s Zacatecas silver mines underground water is a continuing problem. According to Roberto Valenzuela, Sales Manager Mining KSB Mexico, the water contains solid particles so the high pressure encapsulated UPA borehole pumps should be wear-resistant for long term effectivity. Because the dewatering pumps work at a excessive velocity, the impellers and the put on and tear ring can endure from untimely put on. Using Multitec horizontal multistage pumps with KSB’s C6 standard chrome coating, wear is significantly minimised. “We have had pumps running in this mine for over two years with out the impellers being changed,” says Roberto Valenzuela. “It is an answer that no competitor presents, and provides value for the shopper via decreased upkeep, spare components and larger mining uptime.”
In Chile’s Atacama Desert copper and gold is mined at altitudes ranging between 2,000 m and four,500 m. Remote websites, mine depths and the unavailability of electrical energy needed to drive excessive capacity pumps complicate dewatering. High volumes of water contaminated by minerals can delay drilling and blasting and end in environmental pollution. KSB Chile has met these challenges by supplying encapsulated borehole pumps and cantilevered Etanorm pumps, driven by diesel motors.
“Our clients require high-pressure pumps in a modular configuration that may be moved with the growth of the open pit,” comments Patricio Araya, Mining Head KSB Chile. “The resolution is to use horizontally positioned borehole pumps with a special configuration for sand filters encased in a stress shroud. This provides the customer flexibility and versatility as a end result of the tools is compact, develops high pressures and is easy to maneuver across the site.
To accommodate growing flows and discharge stress pumps are configured in series and in parallel particularly for the client’s requirements. Being coupled to diesel engines permits steady, autonomous operation in locations without electricity for between 12 and 24 hours with out refuelling. Vertical Etanorm pumps and cantilever-type UPA pumps installed on a raft enabling them to deal with the accumulation of water contained in the mine, eliminating factors similar to adverse suction head at high altitudes. KSB gear for mine drainage is supplied in commonplace variations, with variations for rafts or nicely pumps installed in strain jackets. Having viable options for dewatering provides worth to the shoppers operations and can additionally be important because every year minerals are discovered at deeper ranges.
Innovation in Indonesia
Indonesia is likely one of the world’s largest exporters of thermal coal, and in addition a serious player in copper, gold, tin, bauxite, and nickel. Here KSB pumps are acknowledged for his or her outstanding capability to perform in severe open pit mine websites. Its development of dewatering and dredge pump units (DnD), as an answer for mining purposes, especially for open-pit mine websites is one example of KSB’ commitment to steady product improvement and improvement. To date, more than 260 DnD pumps with GWI® LCC and LSA pumps have been installed in mines throughout Indonesia and South East Asia. In 2013, KSB Indonesia launched a new mannequin, the DnD Cruiser with enhancements requested by customers.
KSB builds the entire diesel driven pump unit on a barge, full with fuel tank, vacuum pump, management panel and so forth, and ships them on trailers for easy commissioning at site. Because monsoon rains are seasonal dewatering is also a seasonal activity and this means pumps can stand idle for a quantity of months in the course of the dry intervals. Recognising this example, KSB has launched a rental programme, whereby the pumps are provided fully-kitted out according to the customer’s requirements. By not having to purchase the pump units, clients are relieved of the costs of possession and know that after they require models they arrive prepared for operation.
KSB’s mine dewatering systems enable the secure and efficient lowering of groundwater in open pit dewatering, underground drainage and borehole drainage purposes. Regardless of a mine’s location, the sort of mining operation being carried out, the geological and the aggressive and corrosive nature of the water, KSB has fluid dealing with technologies that can match all eventualities. This situation has come about by way of the cross-fertilisation of ideas, applied sciences and experiences gained over many a long time by our companies around the world, supported by intensive investment in analysis and growth. Wherever a pumping solution is required, we can bring a co-ordinated response to the table.