Thursday, October 8th, 2009
During tough economic times, the workload doesn’t necessarily decrease. Faced with the need to do more, with fewer resources, mine planners must work smarter and faster. New tools and streamlined menu options in Maptek™ Vulcan™ 8 mean you can do more with more!
‘Improvements to display options, file size output, auto-population of fields, floating panels, menu wizards and customisable settings all help to make Vulcan 8 more usable,’ said Eric Gonzalez, Maptek’s Product Manager for Vulcan. ‘We’ve revisited areas such as drillhole compositing, block model estimation and coalescing, and grade control, to name a few.’
Engineers can save time on the ground with the new open cut drill & blast tools in Vulcan 8. On-screen preview of drill & blast patterns eliminates potential layout problems before a blast is even set. The new double stitching option allows extra holes to be inserted midway between previously created blast holes using the same or completely different hole design parameters. Excessive toe burdens can be handled by adding holes around the blast perimeter.
In a dynamic mine environment, surfaces are always changing, and the effects ripple through the planning process. Vulcan 8 allows the depth of blast holes to be recalculated as a group to reflect the new surface, saving time and reducing errors. Holes can still be edited individually, with alternatives for maintaining the 2D collar location, or 3D vector of angled holes. New editing options allow selection of holes by echelon, reversal of row direction, renaming of blasts, and customisation of the popular datatip display.
Safety is crucial underground. Vulcan 8 directly addresses safety and regulatory issues. Engineers will appreciate the drillhole warning which calculates how far a drillhole is from blast areas. The display highlights holes which are too close, allowing re-design of drifts if necessary. Similarly, the proximity alert allows engineers to easily check designs for existing voids.
Cost benefit analysis options mean better decisions about mining projects can be made based on the estimated revenue. The new underground stope analyser in Vulcan 8 allows engineers to optimise mine plans based on different cut-off limits, with a time-saving global gradient tool to ensure adjustments in one area are automatically updated in overall designs.
‘New tools help users identify and control contaminants, assign dollar values to mining blocks, apply a discount for benches to calculate NPV, and limit the amount mined by bench or face restriction. Simple changes like setting a time lag between the start and finish of consecutive faces go direct to the heart of site safety’, said Gonzalez.
‘Coal geologists dream of intuitive modelling – Vulcan 8’s new integrated stratigraphic modelling technique moves from database to geological model in 5 logical steps’, he added.
The final step showcases our unique block modelling technique, HARP (Horizon Adaptive Rectangular Prism). HARP’s non-rectangular block models easily handle reverse faults and very thin horizons, and can be reserved against complex 3D solid shapes such as pit cutbacks and mining blocks. A single file contains all the structural, quality, faulting and associated data; thousands of variables per block are permitted. Geological resolution and stratigraphic fidelity are preserved. Vulcan’s extensive geostatistical tools can also be applied to HARP models.
Smarter panels and enhanced data security are welcome additions. Every file type associated with stratigraphic modelling can now be created and accessed from one user-defined directory. The interconnected workflow means that changes can be made to data at any stage in the stratigraphic modelling process; it can then be re-run without needing to start back at the beginning.
The overall impact of Vulcan 8 is ease of use and improved connectivity. Accuracy and quality standards have been maintained while increasing efficiency and productivity. Try Vulcan 8 today to see how you CAN do more!