MINE sustainability hinges not only on meeting production levels but also on maintaining high safety standards. Subsequently, this industry is relentless in its efforts to find solutions to create an ever-safer working environment.
That’s according to Maxiflex Managing Director Bram Janssen, who said this was why the company had decided to extend its range of industrial doors to the mining sector by offering underground ventilation mine doors manufactured by global specialists in the field, USA-based American Mine Door.
“Thanks to their unique design, the door wings open in opposite directions, enhancing safety, efficiency and productivity.”
Janssen said that in addition to giving the mine doors the ability to endure water gauge pressure, the patented ‘opposing wing’ design cancels out the effects of static pressure. Moreover, this key differentiating feature enables the mine to reverse air current without accumulating the costs of disassembling and reassembling doors in opposite directions.
As the same air assists the doors to open and close, the air pressure is equalised, reducing potential stored energy concerns. The risk of ramp slope effects is eliminated as the door wing that operates downhill helps the other wing uphill. Owing to the equal force principal, these versatile mine doors can be installed in most slope applications.
The underground ventilation mine doors are available in three designs – low, medium and high-pressure in sizes ranging from 1.5m – 7m wide to1.5m – 5m high. The doors are installed at a 12/6 pitch and the door wings both open at 63° versus 90°. According to Janssen, this significantly reduces the open/close cycle resulting in improved productivity. Door speed is further increased by cushioned cylinders.
All door functions are controlled by advanced automation control technology. The custom programmable logic control (PLC) package provides operators with greater control and increased productivity, whilst also improving their safety awareness.
The PLC package helps to maintain airlock integrity by allowing only one door to open at a time while the other door is ‘locked out’. Traffic lights and audible alarms at each door signals door positions. The mine doors can also be opened and closed from above ground.
The PLC package can be utilised to count cycles and forecast when maintenance is needed. The units are available in electric, hydraulic, pneumatic and manual actuation systems as well as in single, two and three door configurations. In addition to standard logic packages, custom-programmed solutions assist operators to customise their doors to meet their individual operational needs.
Additional options including lighting systems and audible alarms, interlocking doors, thru-door safety scanners as well as motion trip sensors are also available on the underground ventilation mine doors.
According to Janssen, the underground ventilation mine doors are ideally suited to the Southern African market as they are well-designed with proven reliability and of utmost importance offer complete peace-of-mind with optimum safety for the mineworkers.
“Additional benefits offered by these doors include hassle-free installation and maintenance as all components are supplied with drawings. These products are also reusable and can be easily moved from one location to another. Moreover, the doors are able to use stored energy enabling operation in the event of a power failure.”