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Drilling and Tunnelling News

Grindrod Rail’s focus firmly on Africa as mining expands

29th August 2014 Private rail service provider Grindrod Rail is well placed to take advantage of the demand for commodities from Africa, providing key services for strategic customers wishing to get their product to port and supporting national rail operators in meeting their rail commitments. The historic under... 

Australian states convinced fracking's viable but not taking concerns lightly

By: Esmarie Iannucci     1st August 2014 While Australia is estimated to host more than 800-trillion cubic feet of gas resources, the rapidly expanding gas industry is facing a significant battle in exploiting some of these resources. During the three months to March, Australian gas production reached 15-billion cubic meters, and for... 

Australian states convinced fracking's viable but not taking concerns lightly

Major Drilling expands services underground

By: Henry Lazenby     25th July 2014 Canadian drilling equipment and services provider Major Drilling this week announced its entry into the underground percussive/long-hole drilling sector with an agreement to buy Taurus Drilling Services for C$27.7-million. The Moncton, New Brunswick-based driller on Monday said Taurus was... 

Major Drilling expands services underground

US company contracted to drill at Chile mine

25th July 2014 Integrated exploration drilling services provider Boart Longyear was, in May, contracted to conduct exploration drilling at BHP Billiton-operated Minera Escondida copper mine in northern Chile’s Atacama Desert, says Boart Longyear Latin America drilling services GM Scott Whitt. Minera Escondida... 

LEADING THE PACK Chile is widely known as the world’s number one copper producer
Photo by Duane Daws
LEADING THE PACK Chile is widely known as the world’s number one copper producer

Continuous product development necessary

By: Mia Breytenbach     25th July 2014 Considering some of the key challenges currently facing the iron-ore industry, there is a definite need for original-equipment manufacturers (OEMs) to focus on product research and development for specific customised products, says tooling, materials technology, mining and construction... 

As part of product development, Sandvik’s considerations include the design of rotary bits with more operational flexibility
Photo by Sandvik
CONTINUOUS DEVELOPMENT As part of product development, Sandvik’s considerations include the design of rotary bits with more operational flexibility

Strong Sheq adherence stands quarry in good stead

4th July 2014 Cement and concrete manufacturer AfriSam says its Coedmore sand and stone quarry in Bellair, KwaZulu-Natal has survived tough market conditions and robust industry competition by adhering to strict safety, health, environment and quality (Sheq) principles. “Our Sheq credo has been instituted and... 

SAFETY BARRIER SYSTEM When drilling or blasting takes place, blue poles are sunk into the ground 3 m away from the crest and static climbing rope is strung between the poles to indicate where the no-go areas are
SAFETY BARRIER SYSTEM When drilling or blasting takes place, blue poles are sunk into the ground 3 m away from the crest and static climbing rope is strung between the poles to indicate where the no-go areas are

Master Drilling names new chair as Ledger exits

By: Natalie Greve     26th June 2014 JOHANNESBURG ( – Following the recent resignation of its independent nonexecutive chairperson Peter Ledger, Master Drilling said on Thursday that Hendrik van der Merwe had been appointed to replace Ledger with immediate effect. Van der Merwe would also be appointed a subcommittee... 

Ausdrill slashes profit forecast

By: Mariaan Webb     2nd June 2014 Australian mining contractor Ausdrill has slashed its profit forecast for the 2014 financial year, which ends this month, as the performance of its African Underground Mining Services (AUMS) business disappoints. The company, which owns 50% of AUMS, said on Monday that it expected to report a net... 

Data management is a critical concern

9th May 2014 Managing data has become a critical concern in the minerals exploration community, according to a global survey report published by software developer Geosoft in November. The report found that there was a growing need for effective data management in the minerals exploration community to attract... 

Resources Minister on Ghana’s Minerals and Mining Act

By: Carina Borralho     11th April 2014 Promulgated in 2006, Ghana’s Minerals and Mining Act is aimed at highlighting the country’s mining sector as attractive to investors, while at the same time ensuring that government takes a fair share in revenues that accrue from mining operations, said Ghana Lands and Natural Resources Minister... 

New drilling software ready for implementation

By: Jonathan Rodin     21st March 2014 Technology group Sandvik Mining’s new tunneling project management and information analysis software, Intelligent Sandvik Underground Rock Excavation (iSure), which helps to optimise drilling and blasting patterns, is ready for implementation, says Sandvik Mining business line manager for... 

Compact drill design proves popular

By: Jonathan Rodin     21st March 2014 South African equipment supplier Mine Support Products’ (MSP) drill rig, the Terra, is being used by gold mining major AngloGold Ashanti and Sibanye Gold. The drill rig’s enhanced ergonomic design enables it to manoeuvre around easily tight slope conditions underground, says MSP research and... 

Company launches new track drill

21st March 2014 Machinery and engine manufacturer Caterpillar (Cat) has launched its new MD5150C track drill, the first of the C-Series drills, which features more Cat components and a choice of three different rock drills. 

2 000-m-deep shaft project well under way, says drilling company

By: Jonathan Rodin     21st March 2014 The initial phase of shaft sinking and drilling company Redpath Mining South Africa’s infrastructure development at Zambia-based copper and cobalt producer Mopani Copper Mines’ (MCM’s) Mindola deep shaft is currently under way, says Redpath Mining South Africa MD Ockert Douglas. 

Industry requires formal skills recognition 

By: Jonathan Rodin     21st March 2014 Sixty-two mining industry stakeholders, including mining company representatives, drilling contractors and equipment suppliers last month attended the first South African Exploration Drilling Forum, initiated by iron-ore mining major Kumba Iron Ore, in association with the Drilling Industry... 

Industry requires formal  skills recognition
Dicasa chairperson Colin Rice discusses the first South African Exploration Drilling forum. Camerawork and Editing: Nicholas Boyd.

Company to highlight own brand, add new products to Botswana offering 

By: Ilan Solomons     21st February 2014 Local drill equipment provider Schwalbe will place greater emphasis on promoting its self-manufactured Orange rock-tool equipment range and will introduce new products to the Botswana mining industry to meet clients’ growing demand, MD Jonathan Betsalel tells Mining Weekly. “This year, Schwalbe... 

THREADED BITS Schwalbe will add threaded drill equipment to its Botswana product offering this year
Schwalbe MD Jonathan Betsalel discusses the company's aim of expanding its product offering to Botswana's mining industry this year

Mining services group aims to strengthen customer relations at indaba

By: David Oliveira     24th January 2014 Australia-based mining services provider Ausdrill and its subsidiary, contract surface mining and exploration drilling services company African Mining Services, will display the range of mining services the group offers customers across Africa at the Investing in African Mining Indaba 2014. The... 

JOSÉ MARTINS The indaba offers Ausdrill an opportunity to strengthen its business relationships with major mining companies attending the event
JOSÉ MARTINS The indaba offers Ausdrill an opportunity to strengthen its business relationships with major mining companies attending the event

Company exhibits ability for remote exploration and drilling

By: Jonathan Rodin     24th January 2014 Remote Exploration Services (RES) and Remote Drilling Services (RDS), both part of exploration and mining firm MS Group, will be exhibiting its ability to implement and fully support exploration and drilling projects in the most remote areas in Africa at the 2014 Investing in African Mining... 

Middle Island Resources to pursue further West African gold prospects despite failure to gain majority interest in Niger gold mine

By: Chantelle Kotze     29th November 2013 Despite failing to secure a majority interest in the Samira Hill gold mine, in Niger, ASX-listed Middle Island Resources’ board plans to focus on pursuing other projects to maximise shareholder value, as well as to advance the company’s existing gold projects in West Africa. 

New service-driven geomatics supplier breaking even

By: Pimani Baloyi     29th November 2013 Geospatial products distributor Aciel Geomatics has attributed its start-up success to the company’s approach to business and its focus on being more of a service provider than simply a products provider. “We recognised that the future of this business would be to enter into a contractual... 

Study aims to improve blasting methods

By: Carina Borralho     22nd November 2013 South African mining industry explosives supplier BME technical manager Refiloe Kekana has co-written a paper that aims to increase the mining industry’s depth of understanding in rock and its characteristics, thereby helping mining companies to plan explosions more efficiently. “This paper... 

Drilling company receives compressor on long-term basis

By: David Oliveira     8th November 2013 Leading compressor hire company Rand-Air recently supplied a XAHS186DD Atlas Copco compressor, which can be used in a range of applications, including sand-blasting, to drilling company Round One Drilling Solutions on a long-term basis. Round One Drilling Solutions operations manager Jason Greeff... 

Pilot Crushtec launches seven products at bauma

By: Chantelle Kotze     4th October 2013 Crushing and screening equipment supplier Pilot Crushtec launched a fleet of seven new products that are new to South Africa at the inaugural bauma Africa trade fair, which was held from September 18 to 21, at the Gallagher Convention Centre, in Midrand. 

FETs not churning out suitable artisans for a mining sector that needs to mechanise at a faster pace 

By: Sashnee Moodley     4th October 2013 The South African mining sector needs to mechanise at a faster pace to remain competitive and the skills needed to achieve this are sourced from the artisan pool, but the skills shortage in this area is increasing because further education and training (FET) colleges are not providing the... 

Sandvik takes advantage of bauma to unveil plant, equipment on African continent 

By: Chantelle Kotze     4th October 2013 Tooling, materials technology, mining and construction engineering group Sandvik Construction, a division of Sandvik Group, for the first time in Africa launched its Sandvik CH550 cone crusher, Sandvik DH350 surface drill rig and a complete modular crushing plant at the bauma Africa trade fair,... 

Peru, South African mining-related trade increasing

By: Keith Campbell     13th September 2013 Peru remains strongly interested in the offerings of the South African mining equipment and services sectors, as well as seeing this country as a market for its own mining and mining-related exports. “There is a lot of new technology from South Africa,” highlights Peruvian Ambassador Daúl... 

Prefeasibility study nearing completion

13th September 2013 Australia-based resources company Blackthourn Resources (BTR) reports that the prefeasibility study (PFS) work for its Kitumba project at the Mumbwa copper/gold mine in Zambia, is currently being completed. 

Arkansas lawsuits test fracking wastewater link to quakes 

By: Reuters     27th August 2013 Tony Davis, a 54-year-old construction worker in central Arkansas, said he welcomed the boom in natural gas drilling that brought jobs and new businesses to his hometown starting about a decade ago. But that was before the earth shook. In 2010 and 2011, the quiet farming town of Greenbrier,... 

Drilling contractor maintains sound platinum order book

By: Chantelle Kotze     23rd August 2013 JSE-listed drilling services provider Master Drilling CEO Danie Pretorius tells Mining Weekly that the company has maintained a sound platinum order book this year, despite labour unrest in the sector. 

Hydropower increasingly used as opposed to compressed air in platinum, gold mines

By: Chantelle Kotze     23rd August 2013 The biggest combined force driving the adoption of hydropower equipment in the underground mining industry – specifically in gold and platinum mines – is the need to move away from using compressed air and an understanding by industry that it must do so, hydropower specialist Hydro Power... 

M&R Cementation reaches 700 m milestone on Zambia shaft project

By: Samantha Herbst     9th August 2013 Mining contracting company Murray & Roberts Cementation Zambia has reached the 700 m mark in its endeavour to sink and equip a synclinorium shaft for integrated copper and cobalt producer Mopani Copper Mines (MCM). The Mopani synclinorium shaft project, which is due for completion in June 2015,... 

Efficient drill mobilisation puts drilling ahead of schedule

By: Chantelle Kotze     9th August 2013 Since being awarded a $140-million, four-year-long drilling services contract at iron-ore major Fortescue Metals’ Cloudbreak mine, in February, Australia-based drill and blast services provider Action Drill & Blast had mobilised its drill fleet of 12 drills to site, ahead of schedule. 

Boart Longyear founder nominated for Intl Mining Hall of Fame induction

By: Natalie Greve     8th August 2013 Sydney-listed drilling company Boart Longyear founder Edmund J Longyear has been nominated for induction into the International Mining Hall of Fame in the exploration category. The mining engineer, who passed away in 1954, was nominated for his influence in contract diamond drilling, geological... 

Expansion on the cards for Peruvian manufacturer

By: Sashnee Moodley     26th July 2013 Peru-based manufacturer Resemin reports that the underground mining industry in South America is increasing significantly, with the industry demanding about 240 drilling rigs a year. 

Master Drilling automation strategy progressing

By: Natasha Odendaal     23rd July 2013 As specialised drilling services group Master Drilling embarked on a new raiseboring project for Sasol Mining, executive director Koos Jordaan said that the newly JSE-listed firm was progressing its drilling automation strategies. Master Drilling was undertaking a four-phase project to enhance... 

Proper maintenance of drilling equipment important

By: Zandile Mavuso     21st June 2013 Mineral exploration industry drilling services and products provider Boart Longyear says that proper management and maintenance of a drilling rig is important in today’s mining markets, as they reduce costly downtime and prevent equipment failures. 

Major Drilling cuts staff by 38% as weak market hurts earnings 

By: Henry Lazenby     6th June 2013 Canadian mine drilling equipment and services provider Major Drilling Group International on Thursday said it had cut its weekly payroll staff by 38% to conserve funds, as mining companies slash exploration budgets. “In February, due to the uncertainty around economic matters impacting the... 

Drilling solutions help extend mine life

24th May 2013 Australia-based underground hard-rock mining contractor Barminco reports mine life can be extended through drilling programmes. The company successfully completed its most complicated drilling programme to date, at gold giant AngloGold Ashanti’s Moab Khotsong gold mine in the Vaal river area of... 

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