Cave Mining 2040 is an international collaborative project aimed at developing better cave mining methods.
After all, deposits are getting deeper so cave mining and deep exploration drilling are considered the future of the mining industry.
Cave Mining 2040 will focus on the future of cave mining to ensure it remains a viable, optimised and automated option for the future.
Potential high production rates and low operating costs mean cave mining will increasingly be the chosen way of extracting ever deeper ore bodies.
That is despite the long lead time required ahead of an investment decision and the high capital investment required to establish cave mining.
Block, panel and sublevel caving are the only viable underground caving methods at the moment.
Cave Mining 2040 aims to develop solutions that reduce lead times and capital investment while improving cave mining's societal and environmental acceptance.
The Cave Mining 2040 Horizon 1 Project has eight study areas that will likely have short to medium-term impacts on cave mining methods.
Those are total deposit knowledge; cave engineering; cave establishment; mine design for new and emerging technologies; high stresses and major seismicity; macro-block design and sequencing optimisation; sublevel caving; and open automation platform.