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

Water is present all over the place in mining and its control varies according to its position within the mining processes. In a recent in-depth article by pumps main KSB, the company outlines how this in flip influences the number of technologies used in pumping water. “Alongside the safe provide and recovery of process water is the problem of removing ground water. Process water and groundwater comprise abrasive and corrosive components in various quantities which have an adverse have an result on on pump efficiency and life. Working circumstances, remote places, various temperature ranges and the dearth of electrical power are additionally extremely influential factors.”
The copper mines in Chile and the iron ore mines in Western Australia could additionally be many thousands of miles aside, however these mining operations nonetheless require dewatering and the safe disposal of potentially contaminated water. “The same may be mentioned of the coal mines of Mozambique and the silver mines of Mexico. What they all have in widespread is a requirement for environment friendly and effective water and slurry pumps. Well-matched options assist to maximise the longevity and effectivity of the system and likewise optimise cost-performance ratios, all attributes fulfilled by KSB’s Hard Rock Mining Division.”
The altering face of mining
The search for more uncommon and valuable minerals and metals has opened up mining in countries and places the place previously the trade was small scale or non-existent. Consequently, mining corporations and equipment producers have had to develop new strategies and merchandise. And with the major mining companies having operations in many global areas, turning into a preferred gear provider is important. “The dewatering market is slowly shifting from a pure CAPEX perspective to an more and more OPEX perspective,” reports Brett Lewis, Mining Manager at KSB Australia. “This is especially true for the large mines that understand that poorly designed equipment that often fails, causes a big improve in alternative and servicing price. Some mining corporations are actually committing to a carbon impartial target in the next 20 to 30 years, so are focussing on excessive efficiency gear. They wish to phase out diesel reliance by connecting most bores to their local electrical grid.”
KSB says it is conscious that mining firms are recording pump performance and are accumulating information to compare manufacturers and higher rank their qualities or deficiencies. “This is good information for KSB as the corporate is dedicated to delivering excessive reliability and effectivity pumps, so serving to to reduce back the carbon footprint of mining dewatering operations.
Is there a ‘one-fits-all’ pump solution?
KSB says the reply to this is a resounding ‘no’, however “by sharing experiences between places of work and likewise frequently working with the same international mining corporations, KSB has been capable of develop applicable options. KSB’s involvement within the iron ore industries in Brazil and Australia demonstrate two totally 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 steady production water must be pumped to a dewatering lake which has a dynamic water degree that should be raised two or thrice a year. KSB Brazil’s resolution 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 stage so there is not a need for the pumps to be repositioned. This leads to cost-savings to the shopper. After 20 successful years it has become the standard for this sort of tools in South America.
“The floating station supporting the pumps over the pontoon delivers the move price requested by the customer,” explains Jardel Ribeiro, Sales Manager, KSB Brazil. “Sometimes the pumps, high power motors and associated tools ends in the size of the floating station being increased. Stabilizing tools that weighs more than 200 t requires lots of planning, in addition to the challenge of constructing a system in such a distant space.”
xp2i in Australia
In the Pilbara Region of Western Australia iron ore is mined in a quantity of areas around the Chichester hub zone, an space between 5 and 9 km wide and 80 km lengthy. The mineral deposit sits between 90 m and 117 m under the floor. With the groundwater and water desk frequently replenished in wet seasons and cyclones including to the inundation, more than 75% of the iron ore is beneath the water table. If too much water mixes with iron ore, it turns into low grade and unsuitable for export, which outcomes in large income losses. Also, surface dewatering processes are extremely costly if the water could be very excessive.
The accepted dewatering course of inside the area is to pump the water out by way of boreholes. However, this isn’t with out its challenges. High water temperatures and excessive salinity result in extreme corrosion, while iron bacteria can grow on motors which prevent efficient motor cooling. The presence of fuel is a constant risk in some areas as this causes fuel lock on the impellers resulting in heavy vibrations, which places a fantastic pressure on the motor, loss of flow price and motor failure.
This implies that normal off-the-shelf products aren’t at all times appropriate and the incidence of failures is high. Typically, most bore pumps fail within 12 months, and typically only a few weeks. At its Hope Valley facility in Western Australia, KSB provides mine operators with its UPA multistage borehole pump, customised to face up to web site circumstances. Although a costlier product than its competitors, the UPA has been proven to deliver a considerably longer working life and decreased costs of ownership. KSB’s proprietary know-how that inhibits the expansion of iron bacteria makes the UPA a winner.
Trailer mounted models
In Africa the setting and minerals being mined require innovative approaches to dewatering. In the Katanga Province of the Democratic Republic of Congo, residence to several open minimize and underground copper mines rainy seasons wreak flooding havoc. Here, KSB is delivering several completely different pumping options involving each 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 answer has been to provide Omega pumps mounted on rough terrain trailers. We supply an entire bundle made up of the pump, engine/motor, couplings, gearbox, hydraulic drives and auxiliary tools together with vacuum pump, control panels, screens and so on that delivers excessive head pumping.”
A similar solution can be offered for the open cast 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 constant basis, when the rainy season starts, more assets are in demand KSB SA provides 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 drawback. According to Roberto Valenzuela, Sales Manager Mining KSB Mexico, the water contains strong particles so the excessive stress encapsulated UPA borehole pumps ought to be wear-resistant for long run effectivity. Because the dewatering pumps work at a high velocity, the impellers and the wear and tear ring can undergo from premature wear. Using Multitec horizontal multistage pumps with KSB’s C6 standard chrome coating, put on is tremendously minimised. “We have had pumps running in this mine for over two years without the impellers being modified,” says Roberto Valenzuela. “It is a solution that no competitor offers, and provides worth for the customer by way of lowered maintenance, spare parts and higher mining uptime.”
In Chile’s Atacama Desert copper and gold is mined at altitudes ranging between 2,000 m and four,500 m. Remote sites, mine depths and the unavailability of electricity needed to drive high 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, pushed by diesel motors.
“Our prospects require high-pressure pumps in a modular configuration that can be moved with the enlargement of the open pit,” feedback 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 pressure shroud. This provides the shopper flexibility and versatility as a outcome of the gear is compact, develops excessive pressures and is simple to move around the site.
To accommodate increasing flows and discharge strain pumps are configured in collection and in parallel particularly for the client’s necessities. Being coupled to diesel engines allows continuous, autonomous operation in locations without electrical energy for between 12 and 24 hours with out refuelling. Vertical Etanorm pumps and cantilever-type UPA pumps installed on a raft enabling them to handle the buildup of water contained in the mine, eliminating factors corresponding to unfavorable suction head at high altitudes. KSB gear for mine drainage is supplied in normal variations, with variations for rafts or nicely pumps installed in stress jackets. Having viable options for dewatering adds worth to the shoppers operations and can be essential as a result of each year minerals are discovered at deeper ranges.
Innovation in Indonesia
Indonesia is among the world’s largest exporters of thermal coal, and in addition a major participant in copper, gold, tin, bauxite, and nickel. Here KSB pumps are acknowledged for his or her excellent capability to carry out in extreme open pit mine websites. Its improvement of dewatering and dredge pump units (DnD), as a solution for mining functions, especially for open-pit mine websites is one example of KSB’ commitment to continuous product improvement and growth. To date, greater 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 model new mannequin, the DnD Cruiser with enhancements requested by prospects.
KSB builds the complete diesel pushed pump unit on a barge, complete with fuel tank, vacuum pump, control panel etc, and ships them on trailers for simple commissioning at website. Because monsoon rains are seasonal dewatering is also a seasonal exercise and this implies pumps can stand idle for several months through the dry periods. Recognising this case, KSB has introduced a rental programme, whereby the pumps are supplied fully-kitted out in accordance with the customer’s requirements. By not having to purchase the pump sets, prospects are relieved of the prices of ownership and know that when they require models they come prepared for operation.
KSB’s mine dewatering techniques enable the secure and environment friendly reducing of groundwater in open pit dewatering, underground drainage and borehole drainage functions. 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 handling applied sciences that can match all eventualities. This scenario has come about through the cross-fertilisation of concepts, applied sciences and experiences gained over many a long time by our corporations around the globe, supported by in depth investment in analysis and growth. Wherever a pumping solution is required, we will bring a co-ordinated response to the table.