24 DECEMBER 2018
Six of our employees went on a research trip to Europe, visiting Germany, Poland and Czech Republic.
Our Illawarra Metallurgical Coal operation has taken a proactive approach to managing the prevention and improving its knowledge of coal bursts.
Six of our employees went on a research trip to Europe, visiting Germany, Poland and Czech Republic to understand industry leading approaches to coal bursts, which are the sudden and hazardous ejection of coal or rock into a mine opening.
The group completed visits to three underground coal mines and participated in a series of workshops with subject matter experts. An educational and rewarding initiative, the group were able to bring back several opportunities for improving coal burst management at our Illawarra Metallurgical Coal operation.
These include reviewing the use of test holes and relief hole drilling, implementing a “Drehrohr” (rotating tube) system to monitor stress closure, and mimicking the way the mines in Europe implement their seismic monitoring systems.
South32 Illawarra Metallurgical Coal Superintendent of Geotechnical Services, Roger Brynes said it was a fantastic and invaluable opportunity.
“We were lucky enough to meet and have in-depth discussions with a number of experts who were highly knowledgeable in the understanding and management of coal burst risk. It was a privilege to work with these people, and it is hoped that we will continue to work cooperatively in the future.”