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Opencast Quarries News

Illegal sand mines continue to profit

By: Claire O'Reilly     22nd October 2021 Statistics released by the Department of Mineral Resources and Energy (DMRE) inaccurately reflect the volume of illegal mining operations in South Africa, says mining industry body Aspasa (formerly Aggregate and Sand Producers of Southern Africa).  

Market responds well to high-pressure pumps

By: Claire O'Reilly     22nd October 2021 High-head pumps are the workhorses of many fluid control systems, and their role can often be mission-critical in dewatering applications in construction and mining, where the control and removal of surface water is a primary safety concern, says industrial equipment manufacturer Atlas Copco... 

A picture of a centrifugal pump used in mining
High Head PAC H108 A centrifugal pump used for water transfer in the oil and gas sector, quarrying and surface mining, as well as construction and municipal applications

Lightning protection requires careful consideration as digitalisation of mining expands 

By: Donna Slater     30th September 2021 With the increased use of electronic and digital systems in modern mines comes the issue of lightning protection, which Wits Mining Institute's Professor Ian Jandrell suggests can be addressed in unique and simple ways, stemming from careful consideration and clear understanding. He gave a... 

Association applauds upcoming event

By: Halima Frost     24th September 2021 Surface mining industry association Aspasa (previously known as Aggregate and Sand Producers Association of Southern Africa) applauds the conference concept and the efforts of the organisers of the upcoming Joburg Indaba, Aspasa director Nico Pienaar tells Mining Weekly. “The companies being... 

An opencast operation with product pouring onto a pile
PILING ON? Aspasa believes that increased focus on smaller opencast operations should be added to the scope for future events

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

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

Partnership formed to teach rural women excavator operating skills 

By: Donna Slater     19th August 2021 As part of efforts to uplift women during Women’s Month, South Africa-focused platinum developer Nkwe Platinum and multinational gold and copper explorer and developer Zijin Mining Group, have partnered with heavy machinery manufacturer Sany Southern Africa, to provide an entry-level excavator... 

A Sany excavator
Photo by Creamer Media's Donna Slater
An excavator instructor supervises one of the women undergoing excavator operating training at Sany's Boksburg depot

Victorian resources sector performing well - report

By: Esmarie Iannucci     5th August 2021 New data released on Thursday showed that mineral expoloration investment reached A$135.8-million in Victoria, in 2019-2020, with some 388 662 m of drilling completed. Mineral exploration expenditure, a measure of industry confidence and a precursor to future investment, is at a record high,... 

Mining vital to economy, can help guide country's path – President 

By: Martin Creamer     5th July 2021 Mining is vital to the South African economy and the opportunities that exist in mining can help guide the country’s path to a more inclusive and equitable economy, President Cyril Ramaphosa stated on Monday. Writing in his From the Desk of the President column, Ramaphosa placed mineral and... 

President Cyril Ramaphosa
President Cyril Ramaphosa

New excavator suited to local mines

By: Halima Frost     2nd July 2021 Construction equipment supplier HPE Africa says its new crawler excavator series is suited to earthmoving applications in South Africa’s mining and construction environments.  The R210 Smart Plus crawler excavator series was introduced to HPE Africa’s portfolio in May, with advanced design... 

MAKING GROUND
The new crawler excavators introduced to the HPE portfolio are suited to earthmoving applications
MAKING GROUND The new crawler excavators introduced to the HPE portfolio are suited to earthmoving applications

New excavator teeth cutting ground

2nd July 2021 Earthmoving and utility equipment manufacturer Komatsu’s new Kprime Tooth System from wear solutions specialists Hensley Industries is now available as standard on new Komatsu excavators. The Kprime Tooth System has been designed as a stronger and longer-lasting product, offering additional... 

BARING ITS TEETH
The new Kprime Tooth System fitted to Komatsu Excavators are stronger and longer lasting than previously fitted teeth
BARING ITS TEETH The new Kprime Tooth System fitted to Komatsu Excavators are stronger and longer lasting than previously fitted teeth

RMF encourages extractives supply chain disclosure of transactions with States 

By: Donna Slater     18th June 2021 Research done by independent research organisation the Responsible Mining Foundation (RMF) has found that very few of the trading companies making transactions in extractive value chains, including for metals, minerals and oil and gas, publicly disclose data on these payments to governments,... 

Surface miners developing remote environmental audits - Aspasa

By: Schalk Burger     18th June 2021 Planning is under way for members of surface mining industry association THE Aggregates and Sand Producers Association of Southern Africa (Aspasa) to deliver detailed environmental audits remotely during the Covid-19 pandemic that may be extended beyond the lockdown if required. “Covid-19 and... 

Northern Cape manganese ready to be mined

By: Halima Frost     18th June 2021 Specialist mining advisory company Ukwazi Mining engineer Jaco Mans tells Mining Weekly that South Africa has the capacity and capability to meet the increasing global demand for manganese. He explains that the Northern Cape holds more than 70% of the global manganese reserves and that the area... 

MANAGING MANGANESE
Ukwazi is able to help manganese mines optimise their processes and operations
MANAGING MANGANESE Ukwazi is able to help manganese mines optimise their processes and operations

Aspasa hopes to have concerns heard via online meetings with the DMRE

By: Simone Liedtke     15th June 2021 Surface mining industry association the Aggregate and Sand Producers Association of Southern Africa (Aspasa) has compiled its “big four” priorities to address problems and opportunities in the industry. The association has been mandated by its members to approach the with the Department of... 

Aspasa director Nico Pienaar
Aspasa director Nico Pienaar

Air classifiers replacing wet classification in quarries

By: Claire O'Reilly     4th June 2021 Pressure on the quarrying industry and mining sector to reduce water consumption is at an all-time high, resulting in an increased shift towards quarries’ moving away from wet classification technology towards dry classification technology, such as the Fisher Air Separator (FAS), this is... 

PORTABLE FISHER AIR SEPARATOR UNIT
Waterless classification system used on quarries
PORTABLE FISHER AIR SEPARATOR UNIT Waterless classification system used on quarries

Colleagues pay tribute to Wits’ Fred Cawood as he prepares to retire  

By: Donna Slater     10th May 2021 After 22 years with the Wits School of Mining Engineering, Wits Mining Institute director Professor Fred Cawood is planning to retire at the end of May, starting what he calls his “second life” at the age of 60. He explains that the theory behind a “second life” is based on Japanese work ethics... 

Wits Mining Institute director Professor Fred Cawood
Colleagues wish Wits Mining Institute director Professor Fred Cawood farewell as he retires after serving 22 years in mining education

Skills development integral to sector mandate

By: Darren Parker     7th May 2021 The mining industry needs to employ more skilled workers with higher qualifications to progress and modernise, which will, in turn, enable the industry to operate safer and more efficiently, says mining investment company Menar group social licensing manager Xolile Mankayi. Menar runs several... 

OPEN PIT PRACTICAL Twenty community members attended a 30-day mobile machinery for surface mining training programme in 2019
OPEN PIT PRACTICAL Twenty community members attended a 30-day mobile machinery for surface mining training programme in 2019

New excavator hits local shores

By: Darren Parker     30th April 2021 Original-equipment manufacturer (OEM) Bell Equipment, which through its Southern African distribution network is the exclusive distributor of Japanese OEM Kobelco excavators in Southern Africa, has introduced the tenth-generation Kobelco SK220XD excavator to South Africa. Bell Equipment marketing... 

LOADED
The SK220XD-10 is loaded with features not usually found in 20 t machines
LOADED The SK220XD-10 is loaded with features not usually found in 20 t machines

New drill promises better efficiency

By: Darren Parker     30th April 2021 Original-equipment manufacturer Sandvik Mining and Rock Solutions launched its new Top Hammer XL large-hole drilling system for large-scale surface mining and quarry applications through a global virtual event on March 24. The new machines are available to order, with the first machines ready for... 

GETTING HAMMERED The Top Hammer XL drilling system expands the hole size range of top hammer drilling up to 178 MM
GETTING HAMMERED The Top Hammer XL drilling system expands the hole size range of top hammer drilling up to 178 MM

Menar extends opencast coal operations

By: Darren Parker     30th April 2021 Mineral resources investment group Menar’s subsidiary Canyon Coal is ploughing ahead with plans to begin the development of two new coal mines – De Wittekrans near Hendrina, in Mpumalanga, and Bekezela Colliery in Springs, Gauteng – this year. Menar MD Vuslat Bayoglu said in a statement issued in... 

WIDENING PROSPECTS
Several opencast mine exptensions are currently being planned and developed by Menar’s coal mining subsidiaries
Photo by Creamer Media
WIDENING PROSPECTS Several opencast mine exptensions are currently being planned and developed by Menar’s coal mining subsidiaries

Demand high for automated fuel system

By: Darren Parker     30th April 2021 Since the launch of a fuel automation system at the Investing in African Mining Indaba in February last year, mining technology company Minetec Smart Mining has seen significant demand for the technology. The fuel automation system allows for the management of fuel allocation and expenditure to... 

OGUZ KICIROGLU Diesel is the lifeblood of opencast mining operations
OGUZ KICIROGLU Diesel is the lifeblood of opencast mining operations

V-shaped economic recovery to help surface miners recover, says economist

By: Donna Slater     9th February 2021 With signs of a V-shaped economic recovery, economist Dr Roelof Botha says the surface mining industry will recover in line with hard lockdown’s ending and increased demand for building materials. Speaking during a recent 250 member attended webinar on behalf of surface mining industry... 

Contractor learns lockdown lessons

By: Darren Parker     29th January 2021 The main lesson learned over the past year is that, regardless of the challenges and new limitations brought about by the Covid-19 pandemic, good relationships are key to keeping businesses well-enthused and optimistic, says mining services company Basil Read Mining CEO Nathan Williams. “Even... 

BIG PLANS
Basil Read Mining aims to diversify beyond the commodities it currently works in, while expanding its geographical footprint
BIG PLANS Basil Read Mining aims to diversify beyond the commodities it currently works in, while expanding its geographical footprint

Online hub launched to boost home-grown mining equipment development 

By: Donna Slater     12th November 2020 To increase local manufacturing and the attractiveness and attention thereof, the Mandela Mining Precinct (MMP) and the Mining Equipment Manufacturers of South Africa (Memsa) have launched the Technology Availability and Readiness Atlas (Tara). The launch on November 12 coincided with the... 

Online hub launched to boost home-grown mining equipment development

Collision avoidance system installed, investment on track for Menar

By: Mamaili Mamaila     23rd October 2020 Mining investment firm Menar recently procured a collision avoidance system (CAS), which has been installed in all the company’s opencast mobile equipment, notes Menar chairperson Mpumelelo Mkhabela. 

A BIT OF EVERYTHING 
Menar is considering other diversification avenues while developing its coal and anthracite projects
A BIT OF EVERYTHING Menar is considering other diversification avenues while developing its coal and anthracite projects

Aspasa tightens requirements for its members around fair competition, social aspects

By: Marleny Arnoldi     21st October 2020 The Aggregate & Sand Producers Association of Southern Africa (Aspasa) has introduced a new set of policies for members to uphold, which relate to all aspects of surface mining operations. Aspasa director Nico Pienaar says the code documents good, ethical behaviour and says that, while most... 

Mobile pumps prove useful in opencast mining

11th September 2020 The mobility of trailer-mounted pumps has earned them a reputation for versatility and efficiency, according to pump-leasing agent Integrated Pump Rental. The company claims that its range of Sykes pumps in mobile configuration has encountered “enthusiastic” take-up in various markets, from large... 

A MOVING PROPOSITION
Customers value the manoeuvrability and flexibility of their on-site mobile pumps
A MOVING PROPOSITION Customers value the manoeuvrability and flexibility of their on-site mobile pumps

Strategic penetration of pumps market under way

By: Darren Parker     11th September 2020 Engine manufacturer Cummins is strategically targeting the dewatering pumps market in Africa and the Middle East using a two-pronged approach by working with original-equipment manufacturers (OEMs) and end-users. “We see a lot of opportunity in the pumps sector, with much room for growth. Pumps,... 

GIVING THE POWER BACK
The repower project in Ghana saw Cummins installing complete new power packs on the mine’s dewatering pumps
GIVING THE POWER BACK The repower project in Ghana saw Cummins installing complete new power packs on the mine’s dewatering pumps

Plug-and-play pumps range launched

By: Darren Parker     11th September 2020 Industrial pump manufacturer Verder Pumps South Africa has launched the Verderflex iDura – a new range of pumps – during the 2020 Electra Mining Connect week online event, hosted from 7 to 11 September. The iDura pump range is a plug-and-play version of the existing Dura hose pump range and... 

EASY TO USE
If the user can read the display, then they can use the pump
EASY TO USE If the user can read the display, then they can use the pump

Rental pump option preserves capital

By: Darren Parker     11th September 2020 Portable air and power rental company Rand-Air, a subsidiary of industrial equipment manufacturer Atlas Copco, has introduced the Weda range of dewatering pumps to its suite of rental options to meet demand from the market. This comes after the range of pumps was added as a purchase-only option... 

NO POWER NO PROBLEM
The diesel-driven PAS/VAR range of pumps is ideal for areas where power is not available
NO POWER NO PROBLEM The diesel-driven PAS/VAR range of pumps is ideal for areas where power is not available

Aspasa echoes Minerals Council South Africa’s call to root out corruption

By: Donna Slater     4th September 2020 Surface mining industry association Aspasa has thrown its full weight behind the Minerals Council South Africa’s call for visible leadership in the eradication of corruption. Representing mainly smaller surface mines, Aspasa accounts for a large portion of the overall number of mines in South... 

Aspasa director Nico Pienaar
Aspasa director Nico Pienaar

Accommodation for Aus SoP mine on track

28th August 2020 Work on the Beyondie sulphate of potash (SoP) project’s non-process infrastructure, which includes 60 additional rooms for construction accommodation, has continued apace, notes a press release by ASX-listed exploration and development company Kalium Lakes. The Beyondie SoP project initially... 

NO POT LUCK
A Beyondie SoP bankable feasibility study was completed prior to the company’s board approving full development of the project
NO POT LUCK A Beyondie SoP bankable feasibility study was completed prior to the company’s board approving full development of the project

Pandemic prevents further engagement on housing draft

28th August 2020 A call for further engagement with the Department of Mineral Resources and Energy (DMRE) regarding the 2019 Draft Review of Housing and Living Conditions Standard has stalled as a result of the Covid-19 pandemic and the subsequent lockdown in South Africa. The draft standard requires that mines... 

NICO PIENAAR
The surface mining sector represents a large part of the overall mining community
NICO PIENAAR The surface mining sector represents a large part of the overall mining community

Electra Mining Africa 2020 going digital with Connect – and it’s free of charge 

By: Martin Creamer     20th August 2020 The Electra Mining Africa Connect week will enable exhibitors to promote their products and services free of charge alongside industry-related informative webinars, media activations and product showcase opportunities from September 7 to 11. For the first time in 48 years, Electra Mining Africa... 

Specialised Exhibitions MD Gary Corin.
Specialised Exhibitions MD Gary Corin outlines Electra Mining Africa 2020 Connect plans to Martin Creamer. Video: Darlene Creamer.

Keras acquiring a controlling stake in high-grade Utah phosphate project

By: Donna Slater     31st July 2020 Project developer Keras Resources is acquiring a 51% interest in the Diamond Creek phosphate mine, in Utah, in the US, from phosphate miner Falcon Isle Holdings on the basis that Keras provides a $2.5-million loan facility to Falcon Isle. The loan agreement will be paid in four tranches and... 

Afrimat continues pursuit of UCP

By: Schalk Burger     23rd July 2020 Industrial minerals and construction materials company Afrimat on July 22 announced its firm intention to acquire Unicorn Capital Partners (UCP). UCP’s business comprises of mobile crane hire, exploration drilling services, drilling and blasting, opencast and underground mining and earthmoving... 

Next-generation shovel designed for better performance

By: Darren Parker     17th July 2020 Original-equipment manufacturer Caterpillar opened orders for its next generation Cat 6060 hydraulic mining shovel late last year, although none have been sold in Africa yet. Caterpillar hydraulic mining shovels senior product application specialist Dirk Tegtmeier explains that there are many... 

BUCKET-LOAD OF IMPROVEMENTS
The new Cat 6060 features updated engines, improved hydraulics, heavy-duty structures and undercarriage, Cat electronics and a state-of-the-art cab
BUCKET-LOAD OF IMPROVEMENTS The new Cat 6060 features updated engines, improved hydraulics, heavy-duty structures and undercarriage, Cat electronics and a state-of-the-art cab
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