Mine ventilation for an underground salt mine

CIM Bulletin, Vol. 76, No. 849, 1983

R.E. WEDDING Design Engineer, and D.A. NELSON, Chief Engineer, Mechanical V.B. Cook Co. Limited Thunder Bay, Ontario

A planned production increase of 1.25 million tonnes per year at Domtar's salt mine in Goderich, Ontario required an increase in the underground mine ventilation system from 320,000 to 700,000 scfm. The design of the expanded facility included the addition of a 22-foot-diameter shaft to augment the existing production and service shafts. A preliminary review of the ventilation requirements indicated that in order to provide good economic design for the expanded system, a comprehensive ventilation survey of the existing system was required. The survey was completed in the latter part of 1980, and subsequent engineering design and equipment selection proceeded throughout 1981. This paper presents the methods used to carry out the survey. Particular attention is given to the numerous challenges presented in determining airflows in the large 45-ft-wide by 43-ft-high airways. Emphasis is placed on practical field survey techniques. A mathematical model of the ventilation system using a computer program is described, and the application of this program to provide design data and assist in equipment selection is discussed. Economic sizing of airways and fan selection are analyzed considering horsepower and operating costs.
Keywords: Underground mining, Salt mines, Goderich Mine, Ventilation, Mine ventilation, Air flow, Fans, Computers.