Technology transfer and acceptance key to increased productivity in oil sands mining

CIM Bulletin, Vol. 82, No. 928, 1989

R.K. Singhal, CANMET, Coal Research Laboratories

On the mining side the Canadian oil sands industry has become proficient in excavation and disposal of ore and overburden. Nearly twenty years of mining experience is now behind this industry. While local improvements to existing mining systems and practices will continue, it is believed that some further gains in productivity can be achieved by selectively introducing new ideas from other mining and non-mining industries. This type of technology transfer is vital for over-all cost-effective technology enhancement of oil sands mining operations. Discussed in this paper are the issues of mining equipment, equipment sizing, microprocessor and computer based technology as applied to mine-wide data management, automation and remote control and a projection of likely mining systems in the year 2000! This paper reviews the "state-of-the-art" in selected surface mining systems and attempts to evaluate the forthcoming technology and its application.
Keywords: Oil sands, Equipment, Technology, Open pit mining