A new technology developed by Cementation in North Bay is holding promise as an alternative for bringing ore mined underground up to the surface. Created as a more efficient, cost-effective option to existing models that employ ramps or vertical shaft systems, “injection joisting” transports ore to the surface using a pump-driven pipeline loop.
Cementation president Roy Slack said the technology has real potential to bring substantial value to the industry. “Any time you can impact the capital and operating costs, not only does it mean that existing mines become more efficient, but it can also make the difference between a marginal mine and a profitable mine,” Slack said.
“Some orebodies that may not get developed, this may be a method that allows them to get developed, so that means jobs, that means value creation.” The company has been working on the technology for roughly the last five years, but it came to the forefront of the industry in early March when it was selected to share the $1-million top prize — out of 153 submissions — with Kore Geosystems in the Disrupt Mining contest.
Sponsored by Goldcorp and Integra Gold Corp., Disrupt Mining was designed to showcase individuals, groups and companies that are using exponential technology and disruptive concepts to address challenges faced by the mining industry.
Cementation also earned the Peoples’ Choice Award, adding another $50,000 to its total prize winnings. Injection hoisting, initiated by Cementation’s technical director, Alun Price Jones, uses a combination of existing and proven crushing, pumping and slurry technologies.
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