KSB – open pit dewatering in mining demands durable, reliable and efficient pumps

Water is current all over the place in mining and its management varies according to its function within the mining processes. In a current in-depth article by pumps main KSB, the company outlines how this in turn influences the choice of technologies used in pumping water. “Alongside the safe supply and restoration of course of water is the challenge of eradicating floor water. Process water and groundwater comprise abrasive and corrosive components in various quantities which have an opposed have an effect on on pump performance and life. Working situations, distant areas, varying temperature ranges and the lack of electrical power are additionally extremely influential components.”
The copper mines in Chile and the iron ore mines in Western Australia may be many 1000’s of miles apart, but these mining operations still require dewatering and the protected disposal of probably contaminated water. “The similar may be stated of the coal mines of Mozambique and the silver mines of Mexico. What all of them have in common is a requirement for efficient and efficient water and slurry pumps. Well-matched options assist to maximize the longevity and effectivity of the system and also optimise cost-performance ratios, all attributes fulfilled by KSB’s Hard Rock Mining Division.”
The altering face of mining
The seek for extra uncommon and treasured minerals and metals has opened up mining in international locations and places the place previously the industry was small scale or non-existent. Consequently, mining corporations and equipment producers have had to develop new techniques and products. And with the most important mining corporations having operations in lots of international places, becoming a preferred gear provider is important. “The dewatering market is slowly shifting from a pure CAPEX perspective to an increasingly OPEX perspective,” reports Brett Lewis, Mining Manager at KSB Australia. “This is particularly true for the large mines that understand that poorly designed gear that frequently fails, causes a significant enhance in substitute and servicing cost. Some mining firms are actually committing to a carbon impartial target within the subsequent 20 to 30 years, so are focussing on high efficiency equipment. They want to phase out diesel reliance by connecting most bores to their native electrical grid.”
KSB says it is aware that mining corporations are recording pump efficiency and are accumulating knowledge to check brands and better rank their qualities or deficiencies. “This is sweet information for KSB as the company is dedicated to delivering excessive reliability and effectivity pumps, so serving to 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’, but “by sharing experiences between offices and also regularly working with the identical worldwide mining companies, KSB has been in a place to develop applicable solutions. KSB’s involvement in the iron ore industries in Brazil and Australia demonstrate two completely different approaches to dewatering, both employing vertical multi-stage pumps.”
In Brazil’s Minas Gerais State open pit iron ore mines extreme floor water, monsoons and underground lakes are issues. To preserve continuous manufacturing water needs to be pumped to a dewatering lake which has a dynamic water level that have to be raised two or thrice a yr. KSB Brazil’s answer is a floating station fitted with KSB vertical turbine B pumps positioned over a pontoon (Fig.1). The pontoon rises and falls with changes in the water level so there isn’t a want for the pumps to be repositioned. This leads to cost-savings to the client. After 20 profitable years it has become the usual for this sort of tools in South America.
“The floating station supporting the pumps over the pontoon delivers the move fee requested by the client,” explains Jardel Ribeiro, Sales Manager, KSB Brazil. “Sometimes the pumps, excessive power motors and associated tools results in the dimensions of the floating station being elevated. Stabilizing gear that weighs more than 200 t requires lots of planning, along with the problem of constructing a system in such a remote space.”
Boreholes in Australia
In the Pilbara Region of Western Australia iron ore is mined in several areas across the Chichester hub zone, an space between 5 and 9 km wide and eighty km long. The mineral deposit sits between 90 m and 117 m under the surface. With the groundwater and water table regularly replenished in moist seasons and cyclones adding to the inundation, greater than 75% of the iron ore is below the water desk. If an excessive amount of water mixes with iron ore, it turns into low grade and unsuitable for export, which leads to huge income losses. Also, floor dewatering processes are extraordinarily costly if the water may be very excessive.
The accepted dewatering course of within the region is to pump the water out through boreholes. However, this is not with out its challenges. High water temperatures and high salinity lead to extreme corrosion, while iron bacteria can develop on motors which stop efficient motor cooling. The presence of gasoline is a constant threat in some areas as this causes fuel lock on the impellers leading to heavy vibrations, which locations a fantastic pressure on the motor, lack of flow rate and motor failure.
This means that normal off-the-shelf products usually are not all the time appropriate and the incidence of failures is excessive. Typically, most bore pumps fail within 12 months, and generally only some weeks. At its Hope Valley facility in Western Australia, KSB offers mine operators with its UPA multistage borehole pump, customised to resist website conditions. Although a more expensive product than its competitors, the UPA has been shown to ship a considerably longer working life and decreased costs of ownership. KSB’s proprietary technology that inhibits the expansion of iron micro organism makes the UPA a winner.
Trailer mounted items
In Africa the setting and minerals being mined require progressive approaches to dewatering. In the Katanga Province of the Democratic Republic of Congo, home to a quantity of open minimize and underground copper mines rainy seasons wreak flooding havoc. Here, KSB is delivering several completely different pumping options involving both UPA Z borehole pumps and surface-mounted Omega pumps. “To prevent mining operations from being shut down, a fast localised response is required,” says Rob Bond, Area Manager Mining-Sub-Saharan Africa. “Our answer has been to provide Omega pumps mounted on tough terrain trailers. We supply a whole package made up of the pump, engine/motor, couplings, gearbox, hydraulic drives and auxiliary equipment including vacuum pump, management panels, screens etc that delivers excessive head pumping.”
A similar answer can additionally be offered for the open solid Moatize coal mine in Mozambique the place the water levels should stay low for steady production reliability. Whilst borehole pumps supply good reliability on a relentless basis, when the rainy season starts, more assets are in demand KSB SA offers skid-mounted Omega items. To date, KSB SA has equipped 152 models and all are working reliably.
Latin America
In Mexico’s Zacatecas silver mines underground water is a continuing downside. According to Roberto Valenzuela, Sales Manager Mining KSB Mexico, the water contains stable particles so the excessive stress encapsulated UPA borehole pumps must be wear-resistant for long term effectivity. Because the dewatering pumps work at a high speed, the impellers and the put on and tear ring can endure from untimely put on. Using Special with KSB’s C6 commonplace chrome coating, put on is greatly minimised. “We have had pumps working on this mine for over two years with out the impellers being modified,” says Roberto Valenzuela. “It is a solution that no competitor presents, and adds worth for the customer through lowered upkeep, spare parts and larger mining uptime.”
In Chile’s Atacama Desert copper and gold is mined at altitudes ranging between 2,000 m and 4,500 m. Remote websites, mine depths and the unavailability of electrical energy needed to drive high capability pumps complicate dewatering. High volumes of water contaminated by minerals can delay drilling and blasting and lead to environmental pollution. KSB Chile has met these challenges by supplying encapsulated borehole pumps and cantilevered Etanorm pumps, driven by diesel motors.
“Our prospects require high-pressure pumps in a modular configuration that might be moved with the growth of the open pit,” comments Patricio Araya, Mining Head KSB Chile. “The resolution is to make use of horizontally positioned borehole pumps with a special configuration for sand filters encased in a pressure shroud. This provides the shopper flexibility and versatility as a end result of the equipment is compact, develops excessive pressures and is straightforward to move across the web site.
To accommodate rising flows and discharge strain pumps are configured in sequence and in parallel particularly for the client’s requirements. Being coupled to diesel engines permits continuous, autonomous operation in locations with out electricity for between 12 and 24 hours with out refuelling. Vertical Etanorm pumps and cantilever-type UPA pumps put in on a raft enabling them to deal with the buildup of water inside the mine, eliminating factors similar to negative suction head at high altitudes. KSB gear for mine drainage is provided in commonplace versions, with variations for rafts or well pumps installed in stress jackets. Having viable options for dewatering provides value to the customers operations and can also be necessary as a outcome of every year minerals are found at deeper ranges.
Innovation in Indonesia
Indonesia is amongst 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 excellent capacity to carry out in severe open pit mine websites. Its development of dewatering and dredge pump sets (DnD), as a solution for mining purposes, particularly for open-pit mine websites is one example of KSB’ dedication to steady product enchancment and growth. To date, more than 260 DnD pumps with GWI® LCC and LSA pumps have been installed in mines across Indonesia and South East Asia. In 2013, KSB Indonesia launched a new model, the DnD Cruiser with enhancements requested by customers.
KSB builds the entire diesel driven pump unit on a barge, full with gas tank, vacuum pump, management panel and so on, and ships them on trailers for straightforward commissioning at web site. Because monsoon rains are seasonal dewatering can also be a seasonal activity and this implies pumps can stand idle for several months through the dry periods. Recognising this case, KSB has launched a rental programme, whereby the pumps are equipped fully-kitted out in accordance with the customer’s requirements. By not having to buy the pump sets, prospects are relieved of the costs of possession and know that after they require models they arrive ready for operation.
KSB’s mine dewatering systems allow the secure and efficient reducing of groundwater in open pit dewatering, underground drainage and borehole drainage applications. Regardless of a mine’s location, the type of mining operation being carried out, the geological and the aggressive and corrosive nature of the water, KSB has fluid dealing with applied sciences that will fit all eventualities. This state of affairs has come about by way of the cross-fertilisation of ideas, applied sciences and experiences gained over many a long time by our companies all over the world, supported by extensive investment in analysis and growth. Wherever a pumping resolution is required, we are ready to convey a co-ordinated response to the desk.

Leave a Comment