Hexagon-owned Minnovare introduces Development Optimiser™

Minnovare, part of Hexagon’s mining division, has built of the success of its Production Optimiser underground offering for production drilling with the launch off Development Optimiser, another advanced hardware and software combination aimed this time at delivering more accurate and consistent drilling in underground development drilling projects. The “low cost of implementation, low maintenance” system combines advanced hardware with a digital platform that is applicable to all makes and model of development drills.

The company states: “The development drilling process is heavily reliant on operator skill/training. This reliance, combined with the inherent complexities of underground mining often results in inaccurate and inconsistent drilling, which in turn produces poor development blasting outcomes. Typically these outcomes are unplanned overbreak and dishing of the face, which increases haulage cost and reduces rate of advance. The net is slower and more expensive development drilling, reducing NPV for asset owners and decreasing margins for contractors. Minnovare’s Development Optimiser™ system combines advanced hardware with a digital platform to improve the drilling accuracy to ensure the drilling is as per the design.”

It says the system substantially improves drilling accuracy – leading to optimal blasts, reduced over-break/under-break and increased advance. Once the rail is aligned to the designed trajectory, the driller sets the ‘TARGET’ on the touch screen interface mounted inside the rig cabin – locking in the trajectory for every hole and removing all guess-work.

It “delivers superior setup accuracy” – the primary cause of blast-hole deviation; maintains rail trajectory to designed target and parallelity between rails; and works independently of laserline, levelling and other on-board rig alignment systems. Minnovare says it also integrates seamlessly with rig and mine planning/drill and blast software – for direct import and export of drilling data.

As part of a technology ecosystem it works via a wireless system interface together with Minnovare’s Client Online Reporting Engine (CORE), which includes digital drill plans (Digi-Plan) that capture all real-time drilling data, which can later be exported to mine planning software for analysis. Plus with Minnovare Smart Collar users can calculate new collar positions in realtime, with alignment precision to the planned toe (if the originally marked collar is obstructed due to rockbolts/space).