Improving Ventilation at Hoyle Pond Mine with Monitoring and Control System


Javier Rico Paez, BBE Consulting Canada

Goldcorp’s Hoyle Pond mine has recently completed several projects which have impacted the overall ventilation system. The project includes extending the Fresh Air Raise (FAR) to depth, development of a new Return Air Raise (RAR), and the installation of new sensors and ventilation controls throughout the mine.  Two years after the completion of #2 Winze, the mine is ramping up its ore production to 1,300 tpd (up from 1,100). To ensure safe and profitable production, a reliance upon technology has been needed to provide the required ventilation to the work areas according to the mine plan. To systematically assess the mine’s ventilation in real-time, a significant increase in remote monitoring was required.  This included installing additional flow, pressure, temperature and gas sensors.  The first step in upgrading the existing monitoring was to purchase airflow and differential pressure monitors and install them in key areas of the mine. This paper presents the process of expanding the monitoring capability at Hoyle Pond mine, the selected equipment and the results of the implementation. The intended goal was to improve safety while minimizing capital and operation costs. The monitors were installed in strategic locations to provide immediate feedback on the impact of changes to the primary ventilation airflows. Comparing the available sensor technologies, installing them and systematically monitoring the ventilation served as a first step towards developing a mine wide Ventilation Control System (VCS). In addition, the initial state of the monitoring and control system, with final results and the chosen solution for the mine site, are presented.