Archive | Mining Education and Innovation

Canadore collaborates on space mining tool – by Staff (Northern Ontario Busines – April 26, 2017)

https://www.northernontariobusiness.com/

Sudbury drill firm utilizes North Bay industrial design lab

Canadore College’s innovation centre teamed up with a Sudbury space mining company and a mining supplier on a leading edge drill to be used in deep space exploration.

The staff at the North Bay college’s Innovation Centre for Advanced Manufacturing and Production (ICAMP) has been working with Deltion Innovations and Atlas Copco for nearly eight months to produce prototype tool ends for Deltion’s space mining multi-purpose tool, called PROMPT (Percussive and Rotary Multi-Purpose Tool).

Atlas and Deltion brought the PROMPT concept and tool designs to Canadore’s industrial design lab at its Commerce Court campus for manufacturing and production. According to a college news release, the centre utilized its “additive manufacturing resources,” including its 3D metal printer and computer numerical control equipment, to prototype the commissioned parts. Continue Reading →

Mining industry undergoing ‘remarkable transformation’ – by Lindsay Kelly (Northern Ontario Business – April 24, 2017)

https://www.northernontariobusiness.com/

Modern Mining and Technology Week kicks off in Sudbury

At a time when the mining industry is undergoing a sea change in technology and innovation, it’s never been more important to engage youth and educate them about the available opportunities in the sector.

That was the message shared on April 21 during the annual business luncheon to kick off Modern Mining and Technology Week 2017 in Sudbury. The weeklong event features activities geared toward elementary and high school students to educate them about the mining sector and encourage them to consider pursuing careers in the industry.

Honorary chair Don Duval said the sector is in the midst of a “remarkable transformation” that is seeing the industry adopt innovation and new technology at an extraordinary rate, and he’s witnessing this change firsthand in his capacity as executive director of Sudbury’s Northern Centre for Advanced Technology (NORCAT). Continue Reading →

Could a virus spell the end of acid rock drainage? (Mining Technology – February 6, 2017)

http://www.mining-technology.com/

Microbes play a huge part in mining, both good and bad. But thanks to a new study by the University of British Columbia, which successfully identified and isolated the microbes responsible for acid rock drainage, the good may soon outweigh the bad. Molly Lempriere finds out what microbes to look for.

Microbes are an intrinsic element of the mining process, bringing both beneficial and dangerous side-effects. Naturally occurring micro-organisms are inevitably exposed during excavation, causing chemical reactions that vary from site to site.

Companies as large as Vale and Rio Tinto have begun to use microbes to their advantage with biomining techniques that capitalise on waning resources as regulations tighten. Research into microbes at mine sites continues to yield benefits; one new study by the University of British Columbia (UBC) has managed to identify and isolate microbes involved in acid rock drainage (ARD). Continue Reading →

Big miners have trouble joining technology revolution – by Barbara Lewis and Zandi Shabalala (Reuters U.S. – April 6, 2017)

http://www.reuters.com/

SANTIAGO/LONDON – Mining companies chasing the kind of technological breakthroughs made long ago in the manufacture of cars and mobile phones have unveiled eye-catching innovations ranging from vast drills and remote-controlled trucks to second-by-second data analysis.

Behind the scenes, however, there has so far been limited progress towards a transformation the companies say is more and more vital to their survival. They are being jolted into action by volatile commodity prices and the increasing difficulty and danger of accessing remaining reserves in hot, narrow seams several kilometers below ground.

“There’a a big awakening in mining. The time is ripe for things to begin to change,” Anglo American’s head of technology development Donovan Waller said by telephone. A major obstacle is the massive upfront cost for innovation that firms such as Anglo, BHP Billiton and Rio Tinto <RIO.AX must pay off over the life of a mine in contrast to incremental upgrades common to mobile phones. Continue Reading →

[South Africa] Reviving King of Gold Means Getting Mine Workers Off Their Knees – by Kevin Crowley (Bloomberg News – March 24, 2017)

https://www.bloomberg.com/

During his early years as a miner in South Africa, Joas Mahanuque spent six hours a day on his knees drilling for Impala Platinum Holdings Ltd. The dust-filled tunnels half a mile underground were too low for him to stand, and temperatures reached 105 degrees Fahrenheit (40 degrees Celsius).

Today, he has essentially the same job 2.5 kilometers (1.5 miles) beneath the surface for Gold Fields Ltd. But unlike most of the precious-metals miners in the country, Mahanuque sits comfortably atop a new 7-ton vehicle, using a joystick to control an 8-foot drill as ventilated air blows behind him.

“It’s not hard,” the 37-year-old said while taking a break under the bright tunnel lights of South Deep, the country’s only fully mechanized underground gold mine. “You just sit and operate and make money.” Continue Reading →

Sudbury’s Bio-Mine impresses mining convention (Sudbury Star – March 10, 2017)

http://www.thesudburystar.com/

The Canadian Press – TORONTO — Programmable bacteria, a gold-sniffing camera and a virtual reality tool for taking investors underground were among the innovations on display at the world’s biggest annual mining convention in Toronto this week.

Their makers say these and other technologies have the potential to reshape the mining industry at every stage — from financing and exploration to extraction and cleaning up sites once the metal is gone.

Some veterans of the Prospectors and Developers Association of Canada (PDAC) convention say such innovation is badly needed in an industry traditionally resistant to change.“There’s a lot of inertia in our business,” said George Salamis, chairman of Vancouver-based Integra Gold Corp. (TSXV:ICG). Continue Reading →

Expanding Sudbury’s research ‘culture’ (Sudbury Star – March 9, 2017)

http://www.thesudburystar.com/

Cambrian College and Laurentian University announced an agreement Wednesday they say will boost research and innovation in Northern Ontario.

The agreement facilitates the creation of collaborative partnerships and enables faculty, students and staff at both institutions to pursue large-scale research projects, Cambrian and Laurentian said in a joint press release.

The schools will share professional expertise, facilities, equipment, and administrative services, the release said, in order to boost innovation, productivity and results. Continue Reading →

Digital disruption rocks the mining world – by Jesse Winter (Toronto Star – March 8, 2017)

https://www.thestar.com/

Telling the world where to find your gold may seem anathema to many old-school prospectors, but that’s exactly what Integra Gold chair George Salamis told a packed room of geologists, prospectors and investors to do.

After all, he’s done it himself. Salamis spoke at the 2017 Prospectors and Developers Association of Canada conference in Toronto this week. The conference brings together prospectors, mining companies, industry leaders and potential investors every year with an eye to new trends and developments in the mineral exploration world.

In 2015 Integra Gold open-sourced the data on its Lamaque project in Val-d’Or, Que. The project has nearly 900,000 ounces of high-grade gold indicated and another 1 million ounces inferred across six deposits. Continue Reading →

NEWS RELEASE: CEMI Celebrates 10 Years of Achieving Mining Innovation for the Global Metal Mining Industry

(L to R): Zachary Mayer, Manager, Mine Technical Services, Kidd Operations – Glencore Canada; Moderator: TVO’s The Agenda Steve Paikin; Rick Howes, President & Chief Executive Officer, Dundee Precious Metals; Mayor of Greater Sudbury Brian Bigger; MP Paul Lefebrvre; Deputy Minister for MDNM, David de Launay; Fred Stanford, President & CEO, Torex Gold Resources Inc; MP Marc Serre; Douglas Morrison, President & CEO, CEMI; Conor Spollen, Chief Operating Officer, Canada & UK, Vale Canada Limited; and Dominic Giroux, President, Laurentian University.

https://www.miningexcellence.ca/

Toronto, ON (March 6, 2017) – CEMI (Centre for Excellence in Mining Innovation) celebrates its 10-year anniversary of delivering innovations to the global mining industry to a packed house with a series of presentations and an Industry-led Panel at the Prospectors and Developers Association of Canada (PDAC) 2017 annual conference. The celebration highlighted CEMI’s results and dedication to delivering technical solutions to the mining industry through innovation and commercialization.

Mark Cutifani, CEO, Anglo American, remarked “I was honoured to be part of a team comprising representatives from industry, government and academia that helped create CEMI. Under the leadership of Douglas Morrison, CEMI has continued to evolve to support the needs of the industry.

The most important transition has been the focus on innovation at the high end of the Technology Readiness scale. CEMI continues to work with a wide range of mining service and supply companies, academic institutions, SMEs, OEMs and start-ups to bring new products and services to the market and I am honoured to have been part of their genesis.” Continue Reading →

Sudbury’s Bio-Mine up for $1-million prize – by Ben Leeson (Sudbury Star – March 1, 2017)

http://www.thesudburystar.com/

Yet another right-here-in-Sudbury story is unfolding before our eyes, and on March 5, in front of some 400 mining company executives, government officials and other heavy hitters at the finale of #DisruptMining, a high-stakes mining innovation contest, in Toronto.

Bio-Mine Ltd., a Sudbury-based company, is one of five finalists getting reading to pitch their “game-changing environmental technology” at the Shark Tank-style event, with $1 million on the line.

“You couldn’t ask for that kind of earshot marketing,” said Bio-Mine CEO Kurtis Vanwallegham, who founded the company along with Dr. Vasu Appanna. “It would have taken us a year, two years, to do that, so just the fact that many decision-makers in the recovery and remediation sector are sitting in that room is key. Obviously, we’re there to win, and a million-dollar injection would be a springboard for us, but the most important part for us is actually the crowd itself in one room, getting that many people.” Continue Reading →

A snapshot of mining R&D activity in Ontario – by Alisha Hiyate (Canadian Mining Journal – February 1, 2017)

http://www.canadianminingjournal.com/

As part of its “Innovation Agenda” the federal government announced last year that it would invest $800 million over four years to support research and innovation in five key sectors of Canada’s economy.

The identity of those sectors is still uncertain, but with the funding expected to flow starting this year, we’ll soon find out if mining is one of them.

What is certain is that Canada’s mining sector could use more investment: We only spend about $550 million annually on mining R&D and innovation compared with $2.8 billion in Australia. Continue Reading →

Could a virus spell the end of acid rock drainage? – by Molly Lempriere (Mining Technology.com – February 6, 2017)

http://www.mining-technology.com/

Microbes are an intrinsic element of the mining process, bringing both beneficial and dangerous side-effects. Naturally occurring micro-organisms are inevitably exposed during excavation, causing chemical reactions that vary from site to site.

Companies as large as Vale and Rio Tinto have begun to use microbes to their advantage with biomining techniques that capitalise on waning resources as regulations tighten.

Research into microbes at mine sites continues to yield benefits; one new study by the University of British Columbia (UBC) has managed to identify and isolate microbes involved in acid rock drainage (ARD). This will enable strategies to counteract the damaging effects of ARD, giving mine sites control over the microbes within them and further minimising the environmental effects of mining. Continue Reading →

‘Urban mining’: UBC engineers say e-waste more lucrative than ore pulled from the ground – by Randy Shore (Vancouver Province – January 16, 2017)

http://www.theprovince.com/

Electronic waste is proving to be a far richer source of valuable metals than any ore pulled from the ground, according to mining engineers at the University of British Columbia.

PhD student Amit Kumar and professor Maria Holuszko have succeeded in “mining” copper and silver from LED lights, and they are certain that rare earth metals such as europium, cerium and lutetium can also be recovered.

Light Emitting Diodes are gaining popularity as a highly efficient alternative to incandescent and fluorescent lights and represent an increasing proportion of e-waste and a potential source of metal pollution, said Holuszko. Continue Reading →

[Mining education and research innovation] LU head proud university in ‘new league’ – by Staff (Sudbury Star – January 16, 2017)

http://www.thesudburystar.com/

Laurentian University president Dominic Giroux can look back on several accomplishments in 2016, including tens of millions in new government funding and donations for the university, as well as record enrolment, and his personal appointment as vice-chair of Universities Canada from October 2016 to October 2017, and as chair from October 2017 to 2019, among other honours.

Originally appointed as president in 2009, Giroux has seen many of his plans for Laurentian come to fruition, with many parts of an ambitious 2012-2-17 Strategic Plan already implemented.

He has faced his share of challenges, too, such as the tough decision to suspend programs at Laurentian’s Barrie campus earlier this year. Giroux took some time over the holidays to reflect on his near-eight-year tenure as president and the year that was in 2016, and to talk about his future vision for Laurentian University. Continue Reading →

The Mine of the Future Is Run by Drones – by Corin Faife (MotherBoard.com – January 10, 2017)

http://motherboard.vice.com/

Like the famous canaries that were first brought into coal mines from the early 1900s to detect carbon monoxide, creative solutions have long been used to mitigate some of the risk inherent in mining.

Even so, human bodies have long borne the brunt of this cramped and strenuous occupation, from the creeping ‘black lung’ of coal miners to blasting injuries from explosive flyrock. So it’s good news that the new frontier in mining is to remove them from proximity to physical danger as much as possible, perhaps one day entirely.

That’s why automation is a big deal in heavy industries like mining and construction. Leading names of the industry, like British-Australian firms Rio Tinto and BHP and Canada’s Barrick Gold, are all investing large sums of money in automating more and more of the process of mining, including an increasing use of driverless vehicles. Continue Reading →