Mining Contract: Rapid Response Rescue Drilling System Development for Mine Rescue Application
Drilling boreholes—to offer assistance or rescue—is often the most time-consuming part of a rescue operation, and domestic mines need rapid response drilling technology to improve mine rescue situations. This contract will identify equipment needs, available contractors, and the development and demonstration process for a rapid response drilling system for mine rescue operations.
Contract Status & Impact
After an underground mining emergency, rescue protocol requires that small- and large-diameter boreholes be drilled to assist with rescue operations. The small-diameter boreholes are used for a variety of tasks including establishing communication, monitoring the mine environment, and supplying air, water, and food to the trapped miners. The large-diameter boreholes are used primarily for rescuing the miners via an escape capsule.
Drilling can be the most time-consuming aspect of the rescue operation, and time is critical because the mine environment remains extremely hostile after a disaster. The most recent event requiring rapid response drilling for mine rescue operations occurred in Chile. The rescue operation used Center Rock, Inc., technology and was a complete success. Mines in the U.S. need rapid response drilling technology, and this contract will identify equipment needs, available contractors, and the development and demonstration process for a rapid response drilling system for mine rescue operations.