Presented paper

IMWA2019 Students work

Disruptive Technologies in Mine Water Management - The Future

More, Kagiso Samuel (2); Wolkersdorfer, Christian (1,2)
1: Laboratory of Green Chemistry, Lappeenranta University of Technology, Sammonkatu 12, 50130 Mikkeli, Finland,; 2: Department of Environmental, Water and Earth Sciences, Tshwane University of Technology, Private Bag X680, Pre

Technology relating to mine water management in the mining industry is often outdated and therefore needs to be improved. Using disruptive technologies in mine water management will therefore help to expand the interdependence of mine employees to interact, contribute and collaborate to things. With this technology, mine water management will be safe, secure and time saving. The idea of disruptive technologies in mine water management comes from the concept of the “Internet of Things” which is a giant network of connected devices which assemble and share information about how they are utilised and the environment in which they are operating.

Data from pumps, sensors or water analysis will continuously be stored and analysed to improve the operating system leading to big data that will need to be managed reliably. Consequently, when digital information stores new data it will be added to the blockchain. The system will consist of multiple types of information put together, and this information will be accessed anywhere, anytime due to the blockchain technology. With big data being produced, a classical computing using bit cannot handle such huge amount of information. Instead, quantum computing might be used in the future for faster processing of the big data administered in the blockchain.

Any small change in the mine water or in the mine surroundings will be monitored by means of nanotechnology sensors. These will be installed almost everywhere in the mine to monitor real time data. The problem of polluted mine water will be solved by this system without centralised control, and thus will be managed through blockchain. In simpler terms, also swarm intelligence will be applied in this system as sensors or devices will communicate with each other.

The paper and presentation will describe how this technology allows to manage and monitor all water pathways into, through and out of the mine and how it will be used to feed the developed system with relevant data. Nearly all current mine water treatment plants treat mine water based on the volumes and compositions of water entering the plant. With the introduction of disruptive technologies, all parameters that need to be known for mine water treatment will be collected and used to run the future “smart” mine water treatment plant.