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Explosives News

Secure supply, efficiency needed for mining growth

27th January 2023 An important focus of this year’s Investing in African Mining Indaba – to be held at the Cape Town International Convention Centre from February 6 to 9 – will be security and supply, and with good reason, says Omnia Group company BME MD Ralf Hennecke. He says the pressure is building for the... 

Omnia sees further growth in targeted sectors, interim earnings up 30%

By: Donna Slater     22nd November 2022 JSE-listed diversified chemicals producer Omnia grew its interim earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation and amortisation, excluding its Zimbabwean operations and impairments, by 30% year-on-year to R1.4-billion for the six months ended September 30. This resulted in the group’s adjusted... 

It’s been a great year for Menar, says chair Mpumelelo Mkhabela  

By: Martin Creamer     11th November 2022 Despite its many challenges, 2022 has been a very successful year for the Menar group of companies. “We increased production at our operations, maintained our solid safety record, and made good headway in the development of our new projects,” Menar chairperson Dr Mpumelelo Mkhabela told Mining... 

Menar chairperson Dr Mpumelelo Mkhabela.
Menar chairperson Mpumelelo Mkhabela interviewed by Mining Weekly’s Martin Creamer. Video: Darlene Creamer.

Investment needed for outgoing coal, incoming renewables, impacted communities, Mapungubwe highlights 

By: Martin Creamer     8th November 2022 With South Africa having committed to transition away from coal, investments will not only be required for the retiring of coal plants and the ramping up of renewable energy, but also for coal communities, who will require alternative economic development plans to sustain the livelihoods of all... 

President Cyril Ramaphosa arriving in Egypt for COP27.
President Cyril Ramaphosa arriving in Egypt for COP27.

Explosives firm assists with disposal of used oil

28th October 2022 Major openpit coal mining company PT Kaltim Prima Coal (KPC), which operates in the regions of Sangatta and Bengalon, East Kalimantan, Indonesia, manages one of the largest openpit mines in the world which produces around 60-million tons of run-of-mine coal a year. The truck and excavator method... 

An image depicting oil being tested
TESTING The recovered used oil from a given workshop facility or source is delivered to a specific settling tank where the used oil is allowed to settle for a number of days

Blast tools aid sustainability

By: Leah Shelene Asaram     21st October 2022 Building on the flexibility and accuracy of electronic detonation, digital blasting tools can assist in enhancing mines’ efficiency and reducing carbon emissions, says blasting and explosives solutions provider BME MD Ralf Hennecke. He emphasises that software platform integration is key to... 

an image of one of BME’s blasts
IMPROVED BLAST QUALITY AXXIS Titanium has improved overall blast quality, which ensures better rock fragmentation, thereby reducing energy consumption in downstream stages of blastin

Real-time tailoring of explosive energy a reality

By: Leah Shelene Asaram     21st October 2022 Mining and infrastructure solutions company Orica notes that its “revolutionary” 4D bulk system is available for surface mining, and is being trialled for underground mining, with subsequent market introduction planned for 2023. 4D capability, having been introduced to Australia and Indonesia in... 

Safer blasts shield communities

By: Leah Shelene Asaram     21st October 2022 Explosives and blasting contractor Master Blasters uses only the safest primary and secondary explosives – resulting in the least damage to the environment and impact on surrounding communities – for blasts. Explosives can produce toxic gasses after detonation; therefore, the company uses... 

An image of mine blast
DETONATE IN 3, 2, 1 Master Blasters blast volumes range from 10 000 m3 of rock to 300 000 m3 of rock a month

BME launches graduate programme to contribute to mining skills development

By: Darren Parker     18th October 2022 Explosives company BME, part of the Omnia group, has launched a two-year graduate programme to address youth unemployment and skills shortages in the mining industry. The programme targets various disciplines in engineering and science – including mining, chemistry and microbiology, as well as... 

BME MD Ralf Hennecke
BME MD Ralf Hennecke

Helping world transition to net-zero carbon is mining's biggest opportunity, says Minerals Council president 

By: Martin Creamer     5th October 2022 The biggest opportunity mining has as an industry is to help the world to transition to a net-zero carbon world, Minerals Council South Africa president Nolitha Fakude said on Wednesday. Fakude, who is also chairperson of Anglo American's management board in South Africa, highlighted this during... 

Minerals Council South Africa president Nolitha Fakude.
Minerals Council South Africa president Nolitha Fakude.

South Africans urged to turn exploration into Big Hairy Audacious Goal   

By: Martin Creamer     24th September 2022 South Africans have been urged to rally around exploration as this country's Big Hairy Audacious Goal – a BHAG – so that what is described as "our lowest hanging economic fruit" can be turned to positive account. Council for Geoscience CEO Mosa Mabuza, who was speaking in support of the junior... 

Council of Geoscience CEO Mosa Mabuza.
Council for Geoscience CEO Mosa Mabuza, covered by Mining Weekly’s Martin Creamer. Video: Darlene Creamer.

BME’s AXXIS Silver debuts at sub-zero Lesotho mine

By: Tasneem Bulbulia     9th September 2022 In the mountain kingdom of Lesotho, explosives and blasting specialist BME recently achieved the first blast outside of South Africa with its new AXXIS Silver electronic initiation system. BME – a member company of the JSE-listed Omnia Group – is assisting a diamond mining customer to conduct... 

An image of the BME AXXIS Silver electronic initiation system at a mine in Lesotho
BME recently achieved the first blast outside of South Africa with its new AXXIS Silver electronic initiation system

Used oil programme reflects ESG drive

26th August 2022 The recent solid financial performance by chemicals manufacturer Omnia Group’s explosives subsidiary BME, is underpinned by its environmental, social and corporate governance (ESG) commitment, says MD Ralf Hennecke. Omnia’s mining division – where BME is the main asset – delivered a 29% increase... 

South Africans called on to apply for funding to build South Africa’s hydrogen economy 

By: Martin Creamer     19th August 2022 A call for funding applications to be submitted for the development of the hydrogen economy is made in an advertisement placed today by South Africa’s Technology Innovation Agency (TIA), an entity of the Department of Science and Innovation (DSI). The call is for funding applications to be... 

Call for applications for funding for developing the hydrogen economy in South Africa.
Call for applications for funding for developing the hydrogen economy in South Africa.

EVDS supports productivity

By: Tracy Hancock     19th August 2022 Mining houses are increasingly realising the value of using emulsions in underground and surface blasting applications, and the addition of an emulsion vertical delivery system (EVDS) further contributes to the ever-growing strategy of improving and increasing productivity and efficiency. “The... 

DEBOTTLENECKING DELIVERY
The emulsion vertical delivery system contributes to efficiency, as it frees up cage time, consequently enabling mines to not only increase hoisting capacity but also productivity
DEBOTTLENECKING DELIVERY The emulsion vertical delivery system contributes to efficiency, as it frees up cage time, consequently enabling mines to not only increase hoisting capacity but also productivity

Environmental, social and governance elevating to safety-equalling status, mining webinar hears  

By: Martin Creamer     11th August 2022 The shift from linear to circular value chains has the potential to impact all aspects of mining and requires a rethink, Anglo American Platinum sustainable impact head Stephen Bullock has told a Southern African Institute of Mining and Metallurgy (SAIMM) webinar. In a presentation on the... 

Anglo American Platinum sustainable impact head Stephen Bullock.
Southern African Institute of Mining and Metallurgy webinar covered by Mining Weekly’s Martin Creamer. Video: Darlene Creamer.

New solution helps mines achieve 'optimal' blasting results

By: Schalk Burger     5th August 2022 Blasting technology and services company Bulk Mining Explosives (BME) has launched the next generation of its XPLOLOG blasting control real-time data solution to help mines achieve optimal blasting results to support mining efficiency. “It is important to have quick access to data on drill holes,... 

CHRISTIAAN LIEBENBERG
Users can explore specific data on every hole, such as comparing the design depth and charge versus the actual depth and charge, and the tool giving users customised reports
CHRISTIAAN LIEBENBERG Users can explore specific data on every hole, such as comparing the design depth and charge versus the actual depth and charge, and the tool giving users customised reports

President Ramaphosa’s got it right, says ex-Eskom CEO on new energy plan  

By: Martin Creamer     1st August 2022 African Rainbow Energy and Power CEO and former Eskom CEO Brian Dames concurs fully with the energy plan unveiled by President Cyril Ramaphosa. “I think he’s got it right,” was Dames's summing up of the President's energy initiative during a discussion at the Coal & Energy Transition Day, covered... 

Creamer Media screenshot image.
Coal & Energy Transition Day covered by Mining Weekly's Martin Creamer. Video: Darlene Creamer.

AECI posts record 573c HEPS in H1; Dytor to step down as CEO  

By: Marleny Arnoldi     27th July 2022 JSE-listed chemicals group AECI has delivered record revenue, earnings before interest and taxes (Ebit) and headline earnings per share (HEPS) for the six months ended June 30, which outgoing CEO Mark Dytor attributed to improved market conditions. The group declared an interim cash dividend of... 

Outgoing AECI CEO Mark Dytor
Outgoing AECI CEO Mark Dytor

AECI Mining’s incoming CEO aims to cut carbon footprint, grow outside Africa in the medium term

By: Irma Venter     1st July 2022 Newly appointed AECI Mining CEO Mark Kathan (51) says his main focus over the medium term will be the greening of the company’s manufacturing and logistical footprint, while also growing the firm’s presence in the rest of the world. Kathan, the former AECI CFO, put up his hand for the top job at... 

ESG provides profitable returns from smart capital allocation – analyst

By: Martin Creamer     15th June 2022 Environmental, social and governance (ESG) frameworks not only help businesses and the communities in which they operate but can also generate positive returns as mining companies reduce operating expenses and receive favourable investor interest and cheaper finance. When it comes to ESG, the... 

Picture supplied.
Nedbank mining equity analyst Arnold van Graan.

Quarries upgrading to next-gen detonation tech

By: Tracy Hancock     10th June 2022 Mining explosives and blasting technology supplier BME is steadily upgrading local quarries that have been using its AXXIS GII electronic detonation system for years to its latest-generation electronic detonation technology, AXXIS Silver. “The conversion of one to the other is straightforward, as... 

An image of the AXXIS Silver
THE AXXIS SILVER The electronic delay detonator technology is a cost-effective solution for operations with less demanding blasting needs

Increased efficiency cuts carbon, advances net-zero path, research finds  

By: Martin Creamer     8th June 2022 Like all other key industries, mining is having to advance along a net-zero path as part of the global decarbonisation drive. Gone are the days when innovation and financial improvement can be sold on their own without a carbon advantage. (Also watch attached Creamer Media video.) 

Creamer Media screenshot.
Rocsole CEO Mika Tienhaara interviewed by Mining Weekly's Martin Creamer. Video: Darlene Creamer.

AECI Mining’s new CEO aims to cut carbon footprint, grow outside Africa 

By: Irma Venter     6th June 2022 Newly appointed AECI Mining CEO Mark Kathan (51) says his main focus over the medium term will be the greening of the company’s manufacturing and logistical footprint, while also growing the firm’s presence in the rest of the world. Kathan, the former AECI CFO, put up his hand for the top job at... 

Image of AECI Mining CEO Mark Kathan 
AECI Mining CEO Mark Kathan 

Hydrogen can be stored in existing fossil fuel infrastructure for years, world webinar hears  

By: Martin Creamer     26th May 2022 Hydrogen can be stored in existing fossil fuel infrastructure for years if need be, giving it the potential to become a universal energy carrier in the same way as oil is now but without the environmental impact, World Hydrogen Leaders webinar heard this week. Allowing hydrogen to make use of... 

Picture provided.
Hydrogenious LOHC Technologies strategy and implementation head Dr Andreas Lehmann.

Platinum-boosted South African hydrogen electrolyser leaps ahead   

By: Martin Creamer     25th May 2022 The proof-of-concept of the platinum group metals-boosted advanced alkaline electrolyser – the AAE ­– has been successfully completed by Hydrox Holdings of Randburg in a pioneering achievement that offers the potential for South Africa to enter the fray as world demand for hydrogen electrolysers... 

Creamer Media photographer.
Hydrox CEO Corrie de Jager interviewed by Mining Weekly’s Martin Creamer.

Electronic detonators ensure effective blasting

By: Nadine Ramdass     6th May 2022 Opencast mines have to contend with rising costs as they go deeper. Efficiency is required to contain these costs and remain profitable, which is offered by digital technology such as blast planning software and electronic detonation systems. Electronic detonator systems, such as mining... 

An image of BME's new AXXIS Titanium
AXXIS TITANIUM BME's new detonator system offers many benefits

World Coal Association favours just energy transition to net zero future  

By: Martin Creamer     5th May 2022 The World Coal Association, and its member companies, are in favour of a just transition to a net zero future, World Coal Association chairperson July Ndlovu said on Thursday. In his keynote address to the Southern African Coal Conference, Ndlovu emphasised the sincerity of the association’s... 

Creamer Media photograph
Photo by Creamer Media
World Coal Association chairperson July Ndlovu

Supplier highlights mining efficiency at Indaba

22nd April 2022 Getting behind the renewed enthusiasm of the upcoming Investing in African Mining Indaba, Omnia Group subsdiairy and blasting and explosives company BME will be face-to-face with the mining industry at its exhibition booth. The Indaba will be held at the Cape Town International Convention Centre... 

An image of the AXXIS Titanium electronic initiation system
ON DISPLAY BME will be showcasing its breakthrough electronic initiation system, AXXIS Titanium, which was launched globally in November last year

President Ramaphosa to deliver keynote address at Mining Indaba 2022

By: Martin Creamer     20th April 2022 President Cyril Ramaphosa will deliver a keynote address at the 2022 Investing in African Mining Indaba, which takes place in Cape Town from May 9 to 12. The attendance of Ramaphosa, who will speak on Tuesday, May 10, signals the continued importance of mining to the South African economy as a... 

Picture supplied.
President Cyril Ramaphosa.

Enaex Africa commissions expanded bulk emulsion plant

By: Marleny Arnoldi     8th April 2022 Explosives company Enaex Africa has completed the construction and commissioning of an expansion project at its bulk emulsion explosive plant in Secunda. The company says this is a significant milestone as this is the first infrastructure project developed and completed under the joint venture... 

Green finance taxonomy to help investors make green project decisions – law firm 

By: Martin Creamer     5th April 2022 South Africa’s first green finance taxonomy will help investors and financial institutions make more informed decisions on ‘green’ projects, say Webber Wentzel’s Patrick Heron and Joon Chong. Heron and Chong describe the taxonomy, launched by National Treasury last Friday, as an official... 

Pictures supplied
Patrick Heron (left) and Joon Chong.

New blasting system improves safety

By: Halima Frost     18th March 2022 Having developed, and now busy testing its second-generation WebGen™ 200 in Australia and Canada, mining and infrastructure solutions provider Orica says its trials have shown improved safety and productivity across operations.   The WebGen™ 200, a wireless electronic blasting system with... 

The second-generation WebGen 200 range of wireless initiating systems form small to large, in orange, yellow and green
EXPLOSIVE STUFF The second-generation WebGen 200 range of wireless initiating systems is being tested in Australia and Canada

AECI lifts 2021 revenue, records lowest total recordable incident rate 

By: Donna Slater     2nd March 2022 JSE-listed chemicals group AECI increased its revenue by 8% year-on-year to R26.05-billion in 2021 and declared a total ordinary dividend of R6.85 a share – up 20% year-on-year. The company declared a final ordinary cash dividend of R5.05, 7% higher than the R4.70 in 2020.  

Mark Dytor AECI CE
AECI increases 2021 revenue on back of Covid-19 economic recovery

Namibian emulsion plant opened

25th February 2022 Mines in Namibia can look forward to buying locally-manufactured, quality bulk emulsion when provider of commercial explosives and innovative blasting systems Orica and Native Storage Facility opens a new ammonium nitrate emulsion (ANE) plant near Walvis Bay. 

Spanish firm fined $6m for Ghana truck blast en route to Chirano mine

By: Reuters     9th February 2022 The Spanish company in charge of a truck that exploded and killed 13 people last month en route to an internationally-run gold mine in Ghana violated storage and transport laws and has been fined $6-million, the lands ministry said on Tuesday. The truck was transporting explosives owned by... 

Directors face potential liability for climate change risks – Webber Wentzel 

By: Martin Creamer     8th February 2022 Directors face potential liability if they fail to carry out their fiduciary duties to curb climate change risks and do not make complete disclosures about climate-related risks, Webber Wentzel partner Merlita Kennedy and associate Tobia Serongoane stated on Tuesday. In a release to Mining... 

Creamer Media montage
Webber Wentzel associate Tobia Serongoane (left) and partner Merlita Kennedy.

Huge explosion in Ghana mining region kills residents, fells buildings

By: Reuters     21st January 2022 An explosion in Ghana's rural Western Region on Thursday razed hundreds of buildings and killed an unknown number of residents when a truck carrying explosives to a gold mine collided with a motorcycle. Unverified videos posted on local media showed a large, smouldering blast site in which... 

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