KSB – open pit dewatering in mining calls for durable, reliable and environment friendly pumps

Water is current all over the place in mining and its control varies according to its role in the mining processes. In a current in-depth article by pumps main KSB, the company outlines how this in turn influences the selection of technologies used in pumping water. “Alongside the safe supply and restoration of course of water is the problem of removing ground water. Process water and groundwater contain abrasive and corrosive elements in various portions which have an antagonistic have an effect on on pump performance and life. Working situations, distant places, varying temperature ranges and the dearth of electrical power are additionally extremely influential elements.”
The copper mines in Chile and the iron ore mines in Western Australia may be many hundreds of miles aside, but these mining operations still require dewatering and the protected disposal of probably 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 solutions help to maximise the longevity and efficiency of the system and in addition optimise cost-performance ratios, all attributes fulfilled by KSB’s Hard Rock Mining Division.”
The altering face of mining
The search for more rare and treasured minerals and metals has opened up mining in countries and locations where beforehand the trade was small scale or non-existent. Consequently, mining companies and gear manufacturers have needed to develop new techniques and merchandise. And with the major mining companies having operations in many international locations, changing into a preferred gear provider is important. “The dewatering market is slowly shifting from a pure CAPEX point of view to an more and more OPEX perspective,” reports Brett Lewis, Mining Manager at KSB Australia. “This is particularly true for the big mines that notice that poorly designed gear that regularly fails, causes a major increase in alternative and servicing value. Some mining firms are now committing to a carbon impartial goal in the next 20 to 30 years, so are focussing on excessive efficiency gear. They wish to section out diesel reliance by connecting most bores to their local electrical grid.”
KSB says it is aware that mining corporations are recording pump efficiency and are accumulating information to check manufacturers and better rank their qualities or deficiencies. “This is sweet information for KSB as the corporate is dedicated to delivering high reliability and efficiency pumps, so helping to reduce 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 offices and also incessantly working with the same international mining corporations, KSB has been capable of develop applicable options. KSB’s involvement in the iron ore industries in Brazil and Australia reveal two completely different approaches to dewatering, each using 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 degree 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 adjustments within the water level so there is not a need for the pumps to be repositioned. This leads to cost-savings to the customer. After 20 profitable years it has turn out to be the usual for this sort of equipment in South America.
“The floating station supporting the pumps over the pontoon delivers the flow price requested by the client,” explains Jardel Ribeiro, Sales Manager, KSB Brazil. “Sometimes the pumps, excessive power motors and related gear results in the dimensions of the floating station being increased. Stabilizing tools that weighs more than 200 t requires a lot of planning, along with the problem of building a system in such a remote space.”
Boreholes in Australia
In the Pilbara Region of Western Australia iron ore is mined in several locations around the Chichester hub zone, an space between 5 and 9 km broad and 80 km lengthy. The mineral deposit sits between ninety m and 117 m beneath the floor. With the groundwater and water desk often replenished in wet seasons and cyclones adding to the inundation, more than 75% of the iron ore is beneath the water table. If too much water mixes with iron ore, it becomes low grade and unsuitable for export, which leads to large income losses. Also, floor dewatering processes are extraordinarily pricey if the water may be very excessive.
The accepted dewatering course of within the area is to pump the water out via boreholes. However, this is not without its challenges. High water temperatures and excessive salinity lead to extreme corrosion, while iron bacteria can grow on motors which prevent efficient motor cooling. The presence of fuel is a continuing risk in some areas as this causes gas lock on the impellers leading to heavy vibrations, which locations a great pressure on the motor, lack of flow price and motor failure.
This implies that commonplace off-the-shelf products are not all the time appropriate and the incidence of failures is high. Typically, most bore pumps fail inside 12 months, and sometimes just a few weeks. At เกจวัดแรงดันอาร์กอน in Western Australia, KSB provides mine operators with its UPA multistage borehole pump, customised to resist web site circumstances. Although a dearer product than its competitors, the UPA has been proven to deliver a considerably longer working life and reduced prices of possession. KSB’s proprietary know-how that inhibits the expansion of iron micro organism makes the UPA a winner.
Trailer mounted models
In Africa the environment and minerals being mined require revolutionary approaches to dewatering. In the Katanga Province of the Democratic Republic of Congo, home to a quantity of open reduce 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 forestall mining operations from being shut down, a quick localised response is required,” says Rob Bond, Area Manager Mining-Sub-Saharan Africa. “Our answer has been to produce Omega pumps mounted on rough terrain trailers. We supply a whole bundle made up of the pump, engine/motor, couplings, gearbox, hydraulic drives and auxiliary tools including vacuum pump, control panels, displays and so forth that delivers excessive head pumping.”
A related solution is also offered for the open forged Moatize coal mine in Mozambique where the water ranges must stay low for continuous manufacturing reliability. Whilst borehole pumps supply good reliability on a continuing foundation, when the wet season begins, more sources are in demand KSB SA supplies skid-mounted Omega models. To date, KSB SA has provided 152 models and all are working reliably.
Latin America
In Mexico’s Zacatecas silver mines underground water is a constant downside. According to Roberto Valenzuela, Sales Manager Mining KSB Mexico, the water accommodates strong particles so the high pressure encapsulated UPA borehole pumps should be wear-resistant for long term efficiency. Because the dewatering pumps work at a high speed, the impellers and the wear and tear ring can suffer from premature wear. Using Multitec horizontal multistage pumps with KSB’s C6 standard chrome coating, wear is tremendously minimised. “We have had pumps operating in this mine for over two years with out the impellers being modified,” says Roberto Valenzuela. “It is an answer that no competitor presents, and adds value for the customer by way of reduced maintenance, spare components and greater 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 electrical energy wanted to drive high capacity 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, pushed by diesel motors.
“Our customers require high-pressure pumps in a modular configuration that can be moved with the enlargement of the open pit,” comments Patricio Araya, Mining Head KSB Chile. “The solution is to make use of horizontally positioned borehole pumps with a special configuration for sand filters encased in a pressure shroud. This offers the customer flexibility and flexibility because the tools is compact, develops excessive pressures and is simple to maneuver around the site.
To accommodate rising flows and discharge stress pumps are configured in sequence and in parallel specifically for the client’s requirements. Being coupled to diesel engines allows continuous, autonomous operation in places without electrical energy for between 12 and 24 hours without refuelling. Vertical Etanorm pumps and cantilever-type UPA pumps put in on a raft enabling them to handle the buildup of water contained in the mine, eliminating factors corresponding to unfavorable suction head at excessive altitudes. KSB equipment for mine drainage is provided in commonplace versions, with variations for rafts or nicely pumps installed in stress jackets. Having viable solutions for dewatering adds value to the purchasers operations and can be essential as a result of every year minerals are found at deeper levels.
Innovation in Indonesia
Indonesia is amongst the world’s largest exporters of thermal coal, and likewise a serious player in copper, gold, tin, bauxite, and nickel. Here KSB pumps are acknowledged for his or her outstanding capacity to perform in extreme open pit mine sites. Its improvement of dewatering and dredge pump sets (DnD), as a solution for mining applications, particularly for open-pit mine sites is one instance of KSB’ dedication to steady product improvement and improvement. To date, greater than 260 DnD pumps with GWI® LCC and LSA pumps have been put in in mines throughout Indonesia and South East Asia. In 2013, KSB Indonesia launched a new model, the DnD Cruiser with enhancements requested by prospects.
KSB builds the entire diesel driven pump unit on a barge, full with gas tank, vacuum pump, control panel and so forth, and ships them on trailers for simple commissioning at web site. Because monsoon rains are seasonal dewatering can also be a seasonal activity and this means pumps can stand idle for several months through the dry periods. Recognising this example, KSB has launched a rental programme, whereby the pumps are provided fully-kitted out based on the customer’s requirements. By not having to buy the pump units, prospects are relieved of the costs of ownership and know that once they require models they arrive prepared for operation.
KSB’s mine dewatering techniques enable the protected and efficient lowering of groundwater in open pit dewatering, underground drainage and borehole drainage purposes. Regardless of a mine’s location, the kind of mining operation being carried out, the geological and the aggressive and corrosive nature of the water, KSB has fluid handling technologies that will match all eventualities. This state of affairs has come about through the cross-fertilisation of ideas, technologies and experiences gained over many a long time by our firms around the world, supported by extensive investment in research and development. Wherever a pumping answer is required, we can deliver a co-ordinated response to the desk.

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