Hybrid electronic initiation technology overbreak trials success

To combat excessive blast overbreak in notoriously challenging ground conditions at two underground mines in the Goldfields of Western Australia, perimeter control products were trialled late last year.

Working with a mining customer, Dyno Nobel has trialled its EZshot LP hybrid electronic initiation system designed specifically for underground perimeter blasting.

Ultimately outperforming the other products, visual observations showed smooth, clean wall profiles and a significant reduction in scat material left behind in the tunnel ground support mesh; an indication of minimal blast-induced damage to the rock mass.

Following development blasts at one site, half barrels from the perimeter holes could also be seen, showcasing the technology’s clear ability to deliver controlled, precise and accurate cuts.

Dyno Nobel technical consultant, Sophie Bolger, said the results to date were very promising.

“Importantly, the trials have increased the safety of our operational crews on site through minimal blast-induced impacts and additional ground support systems. We’re looking forward to continuing these trials and seeing the full benefits to overbreak in the coming months,” Bolger said.

While further trial work is planned to verify the impact to overbreak and other downstream benefits at the mines, results at a mine in Queensland have also proven a clear reduction in overbreak down to 10 per cent, from 22 per cent.

Dyno Nobel VP product and technology David Gribble said the technology was producing consistent results, with operator feedback that it is easy to use.

“On both sides of the country operational crews have commented on how there’s no significant change on the job due to its familiar design, allowing quick rollout and blast application to keep operations running on time,” Gribble said.

By combining NONEL shock tube with an electronic detonator, EZshot technology allows the user to pre-designate delay timing and eliminate scatter for predictable and consistent results.

For more information on EZshot, visit us at the AusIMM Underground Operators Conference, March 15-17 in Perth, Western Australia, or visit https://www.dynonobel.com/apac/recent-innovations/ezshot

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