Comparison of Mine Ventilation Software Tools for Underground Coal Mines in Harsh Conditions


Thomas Imgrund , DMT GmbH & Co.KG; Sebastian Spürk, DMT GmbH & Co.KG; Andreas Bischoff, DMT GmbH & Co.KG

Specific conditions of underground coal mines at great depth, such as high temperatures, high rates of methane inflow and natural ventilation pressure provide considerable challenges for the reliable design of appropriate mine ventilation systems. For decades coal mining in Germany has coped with these extreme circumstances. Based on these experiences bespoke software tools for simulating mine ventilation networks have been developed and continuously enhanced. This paper examines differences in the simulation results and underlying calculation methods of two software solutions. The analysis is based on the comparison of FlowNetTM and VentsimTM regarding the accurate prediction of fluid mechanical quantities and their validation with real measurements. A special focus lies on exceptional ventilation scenarios typical for deep coal mines, like gas inflows, fire events and buoyancy effects. The target of the comparison is the future utilization of the experiences gained during mining at up to 1,500 m depth for state of the art ventilation design.