Sandvik simulators to teach TAFE students

A leading Victorian TAFE has acquired two advanced simulators for students to experience the operation of Sandvik drilling rigs at the Victorian Tunnelling Centre.

The CYBERMINE simulators are programmed to display the use of Sandvik’s DS421-C cable bolting machine and Sandvik’s DD420 two-boom hydraulic drill rig.

They were designed and delivered by ThoroughTec Simulation and will enhance the Holmesglen TAFE’s training in mining and tunnelling.

Holmesglen’s associate director of the Centre for Energy and Infrastructure, Ross Digby, said a range of scenarios would be replicated by the technology.

“The new simulators at Holmesglen will teach underground workers practical skills in a safe, controlled and highly realistic setting that reproduces a variety of site conditions and scenarios,” Digby said.

ThoroughTec business development manager Joel Leatt-Hayter said the Sandvik machines were a good choice for young miners to get a feel for.

“The Sandvik DD420 drill rig is an immensely popular tunnelling drill rig used and proven throughout the world, while the Sandvik DS421-C is a rock reinforcement bolter for specialised cement grouted, cable bolt installations,” Leatt-Hayter said.

“Both machines are extremely complex pieces of equipment requiring a high degree of proficiency to operate safely and efficiently.”

The Victorian Tunnelling Centre is at Holmesglen’s Drummond Street campus in the suburb of Chadstone, 15 kilometres south east of Melbourne, offering specialist training to workers in the construction of a variety of tunnels for rail, road and utilities.

The CYBERMINE simulators are capable of safely exposing students to a range of adverse events, explained Leatt-Hayter.

“As an example, operators can be exposed to jammed drill bits or even vehicle fires, which obviously would be difficult to safely replicate on the actual equipment,” he said.

“It’s vital that operators are accurate in positioning the rig and booms to ensure accurate patterns are drilled and optimal blasts achieved.

“Of equal importance is the correct application of feed pressure, rotation speeds and percussion to maximise work rate without compromising drill string life.”

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