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Consulting Engineers News

Dominique Sambwa appointed as SRK DRC chairperson

By: Schalk Burger     21st January 2022 Mining and mineral exploration consultancy SRK Consulting has appointed geological consultant Dominique Sambwa as chairperson of SRK Consulting Congo, based in Lubumbashi, in the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC). Sambwa says an important aspect of his role as chairperson is to promote the... 

Projects still on track to meet payback target

By: Halima Frost     10th December 2021 Despite facing challenges, such as the drawn-out licensing approval process in South Africa, ASX-listed Theta Gold Mines estimates that a payback target of 13 months for its Theta Gold Mines Expansion (TGME) projects is still attainable. TGME, which the company has coined as ‘the reawakening the... 

A mine cart with gold ore mined by Theta Gold
GOING FOR GOLD Theta Gold is currently investing in several South African gold mining projects

As global steel industry mulls sustainable solutions, SA urged to ‘green’ iron-ore

By: Nadine James     10th December 2021 Producing ‘green steel’ in South Africa might be a distant dream, but exporting ‘green iron-ore’ is achievable in the medium term, says Afriforesight materials engineer and project innovation manager Dr Brandon Davoren. Amid the global trend towards sustainability and in the wake of the... 

Magazine Cover Image

Fibre solution aids communication

By: Halima Frost     3rd December 2021 Multinational network operator Paratus Zambia is rolling out its fibre and microwave links to cover the Copperbelt mining area and is extending coverage to the border with the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC). Paratus Zambia country manager Marius van Vuuren tells Mining Weekly that the... 

A mine vehicle in the forefront of ZZambian mine with openpit in the background
IN THE DISTANCE The distance its networks now cover allow Paratus Zambia to connect remote mines on the Copperbelt with the world

African Copperbelt a good mining destination – consultants

By: Halima Frost     3rd December 2021 The Central Africa Copperbelt is the obvious choice for miners looking to expand their copper portfolios, with the region being known for “world-class” deposits, says mining consultants The MSA Group. “Mining companies looking for a foothold in the region always focus on two things – prospective... 

Chrysocolla and malachite exposures on a rock face in Zambia both are copper ores
N PLAIN SIGHT Chrysocolla and malachite are so prevalent in the Central Africa Copperbelt it can be seen above ground in rock formations

Company boasts substantial supply increase

By: Halima Frost     3rd December 2021 The  average monthly turnover and tonnage throughput of Zambia-based steel product supplier Afrope Zambia has increased sixfold since its acquisition by South African logistics and trading company Inter Trade Africa in 2019. The company has expanded its product offering to the mining consumables... 

A man welding a steel mes screen used in the copper mines as a support underground, at the Afrope manufacturing plant in Zambia
STEELY SPARKS The amount of steel used in products used in mine support systems such as screen mesh Central Africa Copperbelt has increase exponentially

Transport group eyes Copperbelt

By: Halima Frost     3rd December 2021 Specialist logistics group Unitrans Africa plans to use its copper handling success, in Botswana, as a launchpad to enter into mining operations in the Copperbelt of Zambia and the Democratic Republic of Congo. “Our recent success in on-mine copper materials handling and pit development, paired... 

A large yellow mining machine with EV capability used to load ore onto Unitrans road trains
POWER PUSH The use of electric power vehicles in the mining sector is being successfully pushed further up into the Central African region by Unitrans

Free software creates safer mine ventilation

By: Theresa Bhowan-Rajah     19th November 2021 With specialist mine ventilation simulation software VUMA-network available at no cost, mining companies, particularly junior miners, can enjoy the benefits of this simulation technology. This is further underpinned by the continuous development and support of VUMA. “The safety of mineworkers is... 

Intrinsic testing tools a necessity – manufacturer

By: Halima Frost     19th November 2021 Using intrinsically safe testing tools in the mining and industrial sectors is of the “utmost importance” amid the explosive gases, vapours and dust in those industries, says testing and measurement equipment provider Comtest technical sales manager Gerrit Barnard. Devices that are certified as... 

The Comtest 28II Ex range of intrinsically safe testing equipment
INTEGRAL The need for safe testing tools is a priority in environments with highly explosive gases present

Solution offered for shaft cooling

By: Halima Frost     19th November 2021 Mining engineering turnkey solutions provider United Mining Services (UMS) Group has successfully completed the delivery of a fast, innovative solution for gold miner Harmony Gold’s Target 1 mine, which will optimise the shaft’s cooling capability. The Target 1 shaft is used to transport people,... 

Workers in PPE using a Hilti cutting blade to cut out the brattice in a shaft of a gold mine
CUTTING IT UP A portion of the brattice in the shaft at Harmony Gold’s Target 1 mine had to be cut from the surface down to 9 m below

Consulting engineers influential in mining success

By: Anna Moross     12th November 2021 Consulting engineers play an important role throughout the mining process, from the exploration phase to the construction and operation of the mine, says Consulting Engineers South Africa CEO Christopher Campbell.  

An image of Christopher Campbell, CEO of CESA
CHRISTOPHER CAMPBELL Consulting engineers, play a major role in ensuring the entire ecosystem functions at peak performance

Renewable power a viable option for mining operations

By: Anna Moross     12th November 2021 Integrating renewable power after construction in mining operations aims to enhance efficiency and decrease costs while minimising environmental effect, says consulting engineers Zutari technical director Daniel Chelopo.  

An image of solar PV panels
SOLAR PV PANELS Renewable-energy consultants assist clients in exploring, comprehending and managing the process of integrating renewable energy into existing grid netwok

Challenges in mining exploration in the DRC

By: Anna Moross     12th November 2021 Determining resources and reserves in the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC), although known for its significant mining potential and “world-class” deposits in various commodities, has its challenges, says SRK Consulting Congo chairman and geological consultant Dominique Sambwa. 

An image of the exploration phase of mining
RESOURCE AND RESERVE DETERMINATION Investors interested in the DRC's mining potential generally have to embark on a risky phase of exploration

New tech calculates ventilation recovery

By: Halima Frost     12th November 2021 Mine ventilation, refrigeration, and cooling engineering consultants BBE Group, in August released the 2021 version of its flagship Vuma-network, free of charge, to the mining sector and other interested parties worldwide. BBE’s in-house product, called Vuma-transient, used by BBE engineers,... 

Six different photos of shafts and tunnels in a mine where BBE have installed the Vuma-network sensors and technology for ventilation
CLEARING THE AIR The Vuma-network of technologies is being offered free of charge to the mining sector to help ensure that ventilation post care and maintenance is up to scratch

Care, maintenance must be communicated correctly

By: Halima Frost     12th November 2021 Environmental consulting company Environmental Assurance (Envass) director Emile van Druten says it is “absolutely imperative” for a mine to correctly communicate its care-and-maintenance plan to not only staff and stakeholders but also the affected communities and suppliers. He tells Mining... 

A sunset picture of a mine with yellow machines in operation, with a laptop, plans and cell phone in, while there is a green belt of natural vegetation in the background
THE WHOLE PICTURE The care and maintenance period of a mine entails so much more than just telling staff

MSA Group, partner see growth potential in Egypt’s growing mining industry 

By: Schalk Burger     8th November 2021 The 82 exploration permits issued by Egypt to 11 junior and major mining and exploration companies, along with the country's underexplored, but promising, mineral resources and its location, bode well for the development of its mining industry and for its role as a mining exploration and services... 

Gold drill core

Diamond producer reaps rewards of modernisation

By: Halima Frost     29th October 2021 v Russia-based diamond miner Alrosa’s significant investment in modernising and automating its manufacturing processes is aimed at improving operational performance and decreasing costs. 

A large yellow mine load dump haul truck entering a mine being directed by a miner at the Russian diamond producer Alrosa operations
BIG MOVER The modernisation drive being undertaken by Alrosa Diamonds across its operations is improving its efficiencies already

Explosives company achieves world-class rating

By: Halima Frost     29th October 2021 Mining explosives and blasting technology supplier BME, a member of diversified chemicals group Omnia, tells Mining Weekly it has achieved a record-low recordable case rate of 0.05% in the blasting sector for the last financial year. A recordable case rate is a well-established measure of safety... 

A yellow blasting mechanism linked to a cell phone being held in a hand, used to incorporate new technologies when blasting at mines
BLOWING UP The use of technology in applications such as blasting at mines has seen an increase in safety and blast accuracy

Company showcases tech innovations on new forum

By: Halima Frost     29th October 2021 Industrial equipment multinational Siemens launched its inaugural Smart Mining Forum as an online event from August 3 to 5. The event highlighted Siemens’ technical expertise and showcased real examples of its software and technology solutions while current and future trends in sustainable mining... 

A cell phone and a deep groove ball bearing cross section highlighting Siemens SIDRIVE IQ application
DRIVING TECHNOLOGY Siemens offers numerous new technologies aimed at the mining sector which it highlighted its Smart Mining Forum

Hoists ordered for mine operation, maintenance

1st October 2021 Mining systems solutions provider Becker Mining South Africa’s distributor in Rustenburg, Tech-North Rustenburg, has secured an order for 26 Kito electric and manual chain hoists and accessories, for a processing plant at a mine in North West province. The hoists have been delivered to the mine... 

A Kito 1 t electric chain hoist, an orange hoist on rail a rail, supplied to a mill in North West province by Becker Mining South Africa,
CHAIN GANG A number of Becker Mining's hoists are being supplied to a mill in the North West Province as part of a supply and maintenance contract

Strong attendance expected for Indaba

By: Halima Frost     24th September 2021 Although the Joburg Indaba mining conference will be hosted virtually for the second year running, owing to the Covid-19 pandemic and the global responsibility to limit face-to-face interactions, event organiser Resources 4 Africa CEO Paula Munsie says the virtual format presents new... 

An image of host and master of ceremonies Bernard Swanepoel at a podium hosting a pre-Covid-19 Joburg Indaba, and engaging with delegates
BETTER REACH Although face-to-face interactions are always first choice, the option to attend online extends the reach of the Joburg Indaba

New valve manufactured for tailings pipelines

By: Halima Frost     24th September 2021 Although South African company Dynamic Fluid Control (DFC) has only soft launched its new slurry knife gate high-pressure valve, the SKG-HP, it has been well received by clients. The clients intend to use the valve in highly corrosive applications such as moving tailings from a processing plant... 

An image of a large blue high pressure valve used in tailings pipelines strung from a hoist
TAILINGS CONTROL The movement of tailings to a tailings dam can be facilitated through a pipeline with robust valves such as the DFC SKG-HP valve

Location tech adds real value

By: Halima Frost     3rd September 2021 Since the installation of a real-time intelligent location system – developed by global location technology platform company Quuppa – the mine in which it has been installed has reported a reduction in downtime and an uptick in productivity, communications device provider Ya Batho tells Mining... 

A black xox or tag manufactured by Quuppa and installed by Ya Batho measures real time positioning in a manganese mine in South Africa
TAG YOU'RE IT The Quuppa positioning tags are installed at critical points through out the mine for fast and effective position monitoring

New contracts awarded to services provider

By: Halima Frost     3rd September 2021 A division of Vereeniging-based furnace and industrial services provider Dickinson Group of Companies, Dickinson Copperbelt Services (DCS), has successfully established new contracts with two separate copper smelting plants in the Kolwezi district, in the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC). “The... 

An image of a large red truck fitted with vacuum pump and tank used for acid plant sludge spillage recovery
PUMP N' DUMP TRUCK Dickinson Copperbelt Services has secured the contracts for industrial services at two new copper plants in the Democratic Republic of Congo

Supplier keeps up with tech revolution

By: Halima Frost     3rd September 2021 Based on its BlueTechnology philosophy, metallurgical industry supplier SMS group has significantly broadened its expertise in processing, supplies and services for nonferrous metals production over the past year to meet the highest requirements of customers. “BlueTechnology in nonferrous metals... 

Three BlueSmelters supplied by SMS group in operation at Aurus automobile company in Russia for recycling of waste electrical and electronic equipment
BLUE GROUP SMS group has implemented its range of BlueTechnology offerings at a greenfield plant in Russia for the recycling of waste electrical and electronic equipment

Centre bridges gap between technology, people

By: Simone Liedtke     3rd September 2021 Mining engineering multinational Sandvik Mining and Rock Solution’s Zimbabwe-based Technology Centre is assisting the mining industry’s journey into the digital future by bridging the gap between technology and people. The centre, Sandvik territory manager Ian Bagshaw explains, is the “human... 

Pic/Image of Sandvik's Tecnhology Centre in Zimbabwe
DIGITAL JOURNEY The Technology Centre is assisting Zimbabwe’s mining industry on its exciting journey into the digital future

Unique refinery concept enters first phase 

By: Halima Frost     3rd September 2021 Global industry body the International Zinc Association (IZA) Africa desk spokesperson Simon Norton says the first phase of its “bold plan” to implement South Africa’s own zinc refinery has started. This includes raising the much-needed funding for the research phase, he stresses. 

A drone image of the Skorpion zinc refinery in Namibia which South Africa imports zinc from according to the IZA Africa Desk
The International Zink Association African Desk spokesperson Simon Norton discusses the concept of a new zinc smelter with ultra-low power consumption and a novel smelting process in South Africa.

Machine learning reaches mineral prospecting

By: Halima Frost     27th August 2021 The partnership between mining consulting services provider The MSA Group and Canadian mining software developer Koan Analytics has resulted in machine learning being available to minerals explorers in South Africa and throughout the world. “The partnership offers access to the most advanced... 

A map of ore deposits in a x-ray type image Ontario Canada for MSA Group and Koan
MINERAL MAP Clients will be able to use machine learning technology to map mineral resources across the globe

Real-time ore analysis set for African market

By: Halima Frost     27th August 2021 Digital mining solutions provider MineSense is establishing offices in Africa and Europe to introduce its real-time ore analysis technologies to the African Copperbelt by the fourth quarter. “Once we have successfully introduced the technology to the upper Africa region, we intend on filtering... 

An image of a large red tracked front loader at the mine face with bucket full of ore ready to be graded by a ShovelSense system
Caption: GRADE EXPECTATIONS The new ShovelSense ore grading technology is expected to reach African shores before the end of the year

Testing facility expansion under way

27th August 2021 Swiss multinational metals and minerals trade commodities group SGS has seen a rising demand for testing services to meet client requirements and, to facilitate the needs of its clients, it announced the construction of its new, state-of-the-art laboratory in April this year. 

Staff at SGS Group standing in front of a site being constructed at its better testing facility in Spijkenisse near the Port of Rotterdam
BREAKING GROUND The new groundbreaking state-of -the-art facility being built by SGS Group will allow for better testing

Metallurgical tests prove profitable

27th August 2021 Gold mining company African Gold Group in July announced the final metallurgical test results from its comprehensive sulphide testwork programme, which incorporated variability testing to determine the optimal process route of the ore across the extent of the orebody at its Kobada mine in Mali.... 

Gold nuggets on wooden table Shutterstock image
GOING FOR GOLD New results have reported a better than predicted recovery at the Kobada gold mine

Portable rig being tested for platinum mining

20th August 2021 Drilling technology and services provider Rosond has announced that it is in the process of testing a new, portable diamond drill rig to get around potholes in platinum mining. A comparative study, to assess drill performance efficiency and safety, between the traditional drill unit and the... 

Rosond Director Carlos Da Silva sat at a desk discusses Platinum Group Metals
CARLOS DA SILVA Potholes present several significant challenges from a safety, quality, cost, logistical and mine design perspective

Use of recycled copper components limits costs

By: Halima Frost     20th August 2021 South Africa-based foundry and engineering company Thos Begbie has successfully manufactured and supplied recycled copper cast components to a platinum group metals (PGMs) smelter near Rustenburg, in the North West, over the past three months. About 115 000 kg of raw copper and 6 500 kg of... 

Thos Begbie manufacturing a copper inline arc furnace component from recycled copper
THROWING COPPER Thos Begbie has taken to recycling copper to decrease costs and increase lead times on its components

Turnkey projects to improve clients’ capacities

By: Halima Frost     20th August 2021 Vereeniging-based furnace and industrial services provider Dickinson Group of Companies (DGC) is executing two substantial projects in the local platinum group metals (PGMs) sector to improve the clients’ production capacities. “The full turnkey projects incorporate the majority of services... 

A large furnace being assembled and supplied to a platinum group metals client by Dickinson Group
COMPLETE COVER The full turnkey solution offered by Dickinson is currently being used on two platinum clients projects

PGMs help keep economy afloat

By: Halima Frost     20th August 2021 Market research company Frost & Sullivan Africa consultant Yaa Agyare-Dwomoh tells Mining Weekly that even though Covid-19 has negatively affected the majority of industries in South Africa, the mining industry proved to be relatively resilient, with mining companies enjoying increased gains. She... 

Raw platinum being held in a white glove, image from Bloomberg
HAND OUTS Owing to the positive impact the platinum sector has had even during the Covid-19 pandemic, the economy has needed less assistance than anticipated

Multiple approach plan to extend life cycle of mine water

By: Claire O'Reilly     20th August 2021 Environmental consulting firm Golder, a member of WSP in Africa, says a holistic approach to water management is essential to achieve resource sustainability. 

This is of a stock image of a mines pollution dam
EVERGREEN SOLUTIONS Golder's life-cycle approach helps with effective environmental planning to optimise and minimise water consumption

SAIMM remembers Navin Singh

By: Donna Slater     17th August 2021 The mining career of Mandela Mining Precinct developer, Southern African Institute of Mining and Metallurgy (SAIMM) fellow and, most recently, Kumba Iron Ore’s head of technology, Navin Singh has been celebrated by the SAIMM after he died on July 12. Singh, who was with the SAIMM since 2018, was... 

An image of Navin Singh
Navin Singh

UMS leads the way for women in mining

6th August 2021 While it is clear that women in mining are a minority, and that long-term thinking is needed to increase accessibility for, and the development of, women in the mining sector, companies such as United Mining Services (UMS) are leading the drive towards inclusivity. UMS Group CEO Digby Glover says... 

An image of UMS Group employees Nonjabulo Zikhali, Siphiwe Antonette Malepe, Genevieve van Wyk and Esbé Miller (front)
NONJABULO ZIKHALI, ANTONETTE MALEPE, GENEVIEVE VAN WYK AND ESBÉ MILLER (front)
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