Picture hundreds of thousands of gallons of water, and—Poof—they disappear. In the right hands, mine “dewatering” is like a magic trick that impressively pumps water out of high wall mine areas or areas with a lot of groundwater. Get the water out of the way, and the riches of what lies beneath are ready for the taking.
What does "Dewatering" Mean?
“Dewatering” simply means to remove water from an area. In mining, dewatering means control of inflows and lowering of groundwater levels. Let’s compare mining to digging a hole in the sand at the seashore. Once you scoop out the top layer of sand, nearby water has a new place to settle. Drillers address this in two main ways: general mine dewatering, which moves water out of the way, and pore water pressure reduction to keep deep surface mine walls stable.
How We Do It
Whether the job is done underground or from the surface, Major Drilling uses the perfect mix of mud, pumps, depressurization systems and more to work its dewatering magic. Years of experience and extensive research and development make it possible to create effective underground drainage systems. Pressure of groundwater held within a soil or rock, called ground pore pressures, are no match for the resources and technical abilities of our experienced drillers.
Often, drillers will be able to drill a borehole down to a mine’s lowest point to extract water directly through the borehole and bring it to the surface. This radically reduces installation and maintenance costs for the life of the mine project. Major Drilling’s experts assess each project individually and determine what is happening with ground water conditions. Innovative decisions are made about where pumps, boreholes, surface water controls, and depressurization systems will be most effective. Then they set up the systems to work through changing conditions like surface water and seasonal run-off.
High wall open pit mine stability is paramount in surface operations. Major Drilling is expert at improving mines by drilling and installing wells from the surface. This ensures pit wall stability, more effective dry blasting and blast holes, and it reduces the possibility of flooding the bottom of the pit. Should a customer need diamond drill core holes, underground drill stations in conditions with varying temperatures, instruments to measure vibrations, or dewatering boreholes as deep as 500 feet, experts must be at the ready. It gets hot down there, too, so when high-temperature water peaks at pressures as high as 870 psi, and flow rates of several hundred gallons per minute build, only the best teams can address these specialized needs.
When You Need It
Mine dewatering simply makes everything easier. How capable is your local driller, and do they have the right equipment for such technical work? Major Drilling has a proven record with high pressure, high volume dewatering projects. That’s because we have access to industry and process engineers, experts, and designers.
When it comes to dewatering from the surface or underground, we know the drill—plus, we have the magic touch of advanced fabrication and visualization techniques making Major Drilling the leading innovator in technical dewatering.
Dewatering is just one of the many mine services Major Drilling offers. No matter what your project is, we have the equipment and know-how to get the job done. Talk to our experts today to get started.