May 2001 – Calgary, Alberta

Lynn discussed the continued need for Steering Committee members, requesting the need for members to take an active role in their organization.

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Sheraton Cavalier
2620-32nd Avenue N.E.
Calgary, Alberta

Meeting Minutes

Lynn Nelson, President of WMEA, called the meeting to order at 8:07 a.m.

Lynn greeted the attendees and welcomed all to Calgary. He alerted all to the need to maintain registration information accurately in the WMEA files as some individuals move around and do not keep the file info up to date. Minutes get sent out at a cost exceeding $20.00 US, and some are being returned as undeliverable. Forms are available on the registration table to check and leave your correct address.

Lynn also commented on the need to be a flag bearer on behalf of WMEA, each to his/her own organization. Members need to be making a report of the information they received and the value their company has gained through attendance at WMEA. In these days of austerity management only worthwhile events are being supported. We believe WMEA is one of those worthwhile organizations and needs the support of all of mining. But, mine management will not know of the benefits they are gaining through supporting attendance at these functions, unless you tell them. We will include a copy of the meeting summary on the website shortly after the meeting, so you might pass it on to your management. Lynn complimented of Syncrude Canada Ltd. for the quality work he has done on the website.

Lynn discussed the continued need for Steering Committee members, requesting the need for members to take an active role in their organization.

8:10 a.m.
Dave Hisey briefly reviewed the business meeting info from Albuquerque.

8:15 a.m.
Jerry Endres gave an update on the financial picture of WMEA. For further information on WMEA financial status contact Jerry Endres. Lynn Nelson made a motion to accept the financial report. Landis Bayless 2nd the motion. All in favor, none opposed.

8:20 a.m.
Martin Reyes reviewed future meeting locations on behalf of Terry Taylor, who was unable to attend.
Nov. 14 – 16, 2001, the Doubletree in Tucson
May 8 – 10, 2002 Reno, Nevada, Silver Legacy
Nov. 13 – 15, 2002, San Antonio, Texas
May 2002, Edmonton, Alberta
Nov. 12 – 14, 2003, Tucson, Arizona

8:25 a.m.
Break into 6 groups for Group Discussion –

Innovations/New Technology

Agenda items for next meeting

Safety – events, programs, incidents

Problems and Solutions

Technical Presentations

Thursday, May 10th

09:30 a.m.
Web Site Update
Wayne Parsons – Syncrude Canada Ltd.
Wayne brought the web site to us online. Demonstrating the contents of the site, how it works, what information it contains, how to get information from the website, how to update your company information. Links are available for Mining companies as well as for vendors and other related organizations. He demonstrated the ability to ask questions (Ask WMEA) or provide answers to those questions that have been asked. He intends the web site to be an interactive one – so please use it. There is a guest book for visitors to register in. Wayne or any of the executive committee can be contacted through the web site.

10:00 a.m.
Variable Frequency Drive Cable
Dan Mainstruck – General Cable
This presentation builds on the recommendations from the IEEE study which was done by Bentley & Link in 1996. It discusses the problems generated by harmonics within a cable system. Ground currents, common mode currents and reflected waves can cause problems ranging from destruction of windings to unwanted machine motion or voltage inducement caused by cross-talk and related noise. This presentation describes the problems typical in modern VFD systems and recommends a cable manufactured to the specifications of Bentley & Link 1996, which will not clean up the power system, but will contain the maladies to that specific system.

11:00 a.m.
Partial Discharge Theory and Applications to Electrical Equipment
Cal Patterson – Cutler-Hammer
This expands the predictive maintenance envelope a little more. Cal presents a method of electrical failure monitoring of rotating equipment using embedded RTD’s as a window to look inside rotating apparatus and measure the degree of electrical leakage occurring. He also describes Vibracoustic Analysis of transformers pioneered by Victor Sokalaw of Russia, using accelerometers to analyze transformer condition. Rotating apparatus, motor control center and electrical buss monitoring will soon be available with continuous online monitoring capability allowing another method of providing on line trending of electrical apparatus condition.

1:00 p.m.
3D GPS Monitoring and Positioning
Jim Gray – Aquila Mining Systems
A Montreal, Canada based company, Aquila was formed in 1992 at the request of the Canadian mining industry and is a member of an alliance of companies including Trimble, Caterpillar, Aquila and Mincom. Aquila has specialized in blast hole drill technology providing real-time data logging and online feedback to the drill, thus providing blast hole loading equipment with the exact explosive requirements. The drill position is monitored and directed through GPS positioning and online downloading of positioning data to a common data buss. This has provided extremely accurate blast hole locating without the requirement to survey. This proven technology is now being applied to draglines, eliminating the need to survey in dragline cut positions and reject feed zones etc. The end result will be similar to that provided to blast hole drills, the dragline will supply information on the type of digging which will relate to, the type of feed, where it is located and where it has been placed while logging the production data onto the same data buss. In turn the dragline will receive cut plan data which can be selected by the operator within limits given. Bridger Coal will be the first to experience this system on board their machines.

2:30 p.m.
MSHA Noise Regulation Update
Glen Hood – TXU Mining
Since MSHA in the USA first introduced the revised noise regulations last year, (September 13, 2000) there has been a good deal of confusion throughout the US Mining industry as to what this will mean to Miners. OSHA has taken the approach that no one actually wears hearing protection, so has assigned noise level values at which working time must be restricted. This is regardless of the value of the hearing protection that can or must be worn. That value is 115 decibels which will be enforced at 117 decibels never exceed value with a maximum duration in a 12 hour period of 15 minutes. Most jurisdictions within Canada while tightening enforcement, still consider hearing protection effective and do not assign a maximum value that can occur while workers are present. Glen reported on a meeting led by Bucyrus International at Milwaukee involving interested members of the mining community. Jerry Endres and Glen performed testing on TXU draglines and presented that data, showing problem areas on each machine type. This interesting data and topic created a good deal of floor discussion.

Friday, May 11th
08:30 a.m.
Group Discussion Presentations
Review of group discussions, held on Thursday, by group leaders. Summary details as provided by group leaders are under separate cover.

09:45 a.m.
Driverless Trucks – Update on Newest Technology
Les Zoschke – Modular Mining
Modular Mining working with Komatzu has developed a very repeatable and reliable system of operating a haul truck fleet sans the operator. Les Zoschke walked us through a pictorial as well as technical overview of the 4 truck fleet they have operating at a mine in Australia. The trucks are provided with GPS as well as inertial guidance systems operating in tandem, providing a guidance system that is so repeatable the trucks always follow the exact same tire track, braking and accelerating at the exact same point. Whole truck monitoring is provided as is radar and other sensory systems which protect workers and other equipment which ventures onto the haul road. Modular is so satisfied with the current state of their technology that “babysitter operators” are no longer used on the trucks. Les demonstrated the haul dump characteristics and single backup loading capability. He stated that double backup loading and highwall dumping is something yet in the future. This is a technology still in the making.

11:00 a.m.
Update on Alberta’s Regulatory Review Process and Its Impact on Mining
Don Hindy –Alberta Mines Health & Safety Program Coordinator

Some changes have been occurring since Don last met with WMEA in 1999. There is a mandatory 5 year review process for regulatory issues, that began in 1999. Existing Workplace Health & Safety regulations include: Mines Safety Regulation, General Safety Regulation, Chemical Hazards Regulation, Explosives Regulation, Noise Regulation, First Aid Regulation, and Ventilation Regulation. Once the review and consolidation is completed there will be one or 2 volumes of one book rather than the seven which now exist. This new regulation should be adopted into law by approximately Oct. 31/01. To coincide with the new regulations, all existing regulations will be appealed – including the existing Mines Safety Regulation. The new CSA Standard M421-00 Use of Electricity in Mines will be adopted into law also. There is new “Working Alone” regulations that will affect mining. Changes will occur to provide privacy for First Aid records, a logbook can not be left out for all to sign and see. The government is preparing slide presentations that will be handed out so companies may easily provide presentations to their employees. Don also presented some slides showing how the LTA rate appears to have bottomed out showing that current programs will not lower injury rate any further; they will be looking at the workplace a little more to ensure that existing and new standards are being applied. They are also looking for new methods of lowering the workplace injury rate.

11:40 a.m.
Identified Electrical Issues from Mines Inspections in Alberta
Ron King – Alberta Mines Electrical Inspector

Ron concentrated most of his time on substation grounding and problems with the coupling of equipment grounds and station grounds together. There are problems, especially in tarsand, associated with establishing the voltage rise levels, stated in Table 52 of IEEE No. 80, which is required by code in Canada for step and touch potentials in substations. Ron presented some computer representations of the problem. He also reiterated Don Hindy’s comment about the adoption of the new M421-00 into law this fall, so look it over and send him or Don any concerns you might have.

12:15 p.m.
Closing remarks by President Lynn Nelson