Underground mining companies urged to invest in modern technology in mine ventilation
MINING companies involved in underground operations have been urged to invest in modern technology in mine ventilation as this enables real time monitoring of environmental conditions underground and timeous interventions which prevent unnecessary loss of lives.
The call was made by the president of the Mine Ventilation Society of Zimbabwe Mr Joshua Tigere at the association’s Annual General Meeting held in Hwange on Thursday.
“Modern technology in mine ventilation both on established mining operations or smaller entities is pointing towards real time monitoring of environmental conditions underground and this assists in improving operational efficiencies and timeous interventions which saves lives.
“The modern technology mainly in fan engineering saves power as over designs are avoided and fans with variable speed drives are now preferred as they are easily adjustable to suit air requirements at various underground operations hence investments in modern technology cannot be overemphasised as it is critical for the well-being of this sector which is major contributor to the nation’s economy,” said Mr Tigere, who is a senior ventilation officer at Zimplats Mine.
The AGM was preceded by a technical tour of Hwange Colliery Company’s 3 Main Underground Mine.
In his remarks after the tour, Hwange Colliery mine planning manager Mr Nixon Mugwadhi said underground operations were set to resume next month.
“Ventilation Society of Zimbabwe is a critical stakeholder to Hwange Colliery and their technical tour came at the right time as we are now preparing to resume operations at 3 Main Underground Mine sometime next month when we take delivery of the support equipment to the Continuous Miner (CM) which was delivered at the mine around mid-August after some repairs in South Africa. The society will assist us with ways to improve our ventilation system, update on changing trends and share experiences from other mines, something which will assist us in this operation which is a huge component in our turnaround strategy as a mine,” he said.
The Mine Ventilation Society of Zimbabwe was formed in 1993 and has functions which include information sharing among mines, consultative roles, facilitation of technical training for members, setting of examinations for ventilation courses and curriculum development at the Zimbabwe School of Mines, among others.
Hwange Colliery Company, Zimplats Mine, Unki, Fredda Rebecca Mine, Bindura Nickel Corporation, Jena Mine, Mimosa Mine and Vumbachikwe are members of the society.