05.18.2017

Mining world looks to Northern Ontario for innovation

 

By Norm Tollinsky EDITOR Sudbury Mining Solutions Journal

By Norm Tollinsky
EDITOR
Sudbury Mining Solutions Journal

Congratulating mining contractor Cementation for its grand prize victory at the Disrupt Mining event co-sponsored by Goldcorp and Integra Gold during the PDAC in March, Rick Howes, president and CEO of Dundee Precious Metals made an observation about the important role that Northern Ontario plays in the global mining industry.

“I’m a Northern Ontario boy. I spent most of my career in Northern Ontario and I see how far we’re spreading our influence globally,” Howes told a standing room only audience attending a panel discussion sponsored by the Centre for Excellence in Mining Innovation.

Fellow panelist Fred Stanford, former president of Ontario Operations for Vale and currently president and CEO of Torex Gold Resources works in Mexico, said Howes. “I work in Europe and Africa.”

Rick could have gone on an on. Roy Slack and Alun Price Jones, the two Cementation executives who are championing the company’s innovative injection hoisting solution that wowed the Disrupt Mining judges are from North Bay. Kurtis Vanwallegham and Dr. Vasu Appanna of Bio-Mine Ltd., a Disrupt Mining finalist, are from Sudbury, as are semi-finalists Andrew Dasys of Objectivity and Walter and Ryan Siggelkow of Hard-Line Solutions.

And that’s just scratching the surface. This issue of Sudbury Mining Solutions Journal speaks volumes about the concentration of mining expertise in Northern Ontario and the global reach of mining suppliers in the region.

Northern Survey Supply of Mattawa and Sudbury is breaking new ground with its Miner Operated Survey System (MOSS). Currently being deployed by Lion One Metals in Fiji and trialed by Jaguar Mining in Brazil, MOSS allows every round to be surveyed and evaluated for overbreak and underbreak.

RDH Mining Equipment, a Sudbury-area mining equipment manufacturer, has sold battery-powered loaders to Russia and Peru and MacLean Engineering just shipped two high lift, heavy duty LR3 boom lifts to Australia. Not to be outdone, Maestro Digital Mine has sold its Vigilante AQS gas monitoring technology to some 70 mines around the world and has introduced a coaxial gigabit networking solution that’s poised to simplify the installation and maintenance of underground communication infrastructure.

Northern Ontario’s prominence on the mining industry’s world stage is wholly attributable to the expertise and innovation resulting from more than a century of mining in the region.

In this issue of Sudbury Mining Solutions Journal, we report on the development of a steel canopy by Nordic Minesteel Technologies of North Bay that promises to dramatically shorten the underground development cycle by allowing for concurrent drilling and installation of ground control. We also put the spotlight on National Mine Safety’s introduction of a new helmet for shotcreting and on MIRARCO – Mining Innovation for the commissioning of a hydraulic air compressor demonstrator at Dynamic Earth in Sudbury.

It’s not a stretch to predict that these innovations will soon be making their way to mines around the world in the not too distant future.