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Deposition planning at the Diavik Diamond Mine

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Title: Deposition planning at the Diavik Diamond Mine
Author: Cunning, John; Isidoro, Allison; Apaz, Claudia; Kinakin, Carla
Issue Date: 2011-11
Publicly Available in cIRcle 2011-10-19
Series/Report no. Tailings and Mine Waste 2011: Vancouver, Canada
Abstract: The Diavik Diamond Mine (Diavik), a joint venture of Rio Tinto and Harry Winston, is located on East Island in Lac de Gras in the subarctic climatic region of Canada’s Northwest Territories and has been in operation since 2002. Following diamond extraction from the kimberlite ore, the remaining processed kimberlite materials are stored permanently in a Processed Kimberlite Containment (PKC) Facility. Deposition planning has been an integral part of the design and operation of the PKC Facility. Long term deposition planning has been used for scheduling future piping relocations, dam raising requirements, water management, and closure planning. Short and medium term deposition planning have been used as part of ongoing facility operations to achieve objectives such as maintaining a central pond with suitable depth for process water reclaim, beach management, and for commissioning new areas of the facility. Initially, deposition planning services were provided to Diavik by Golder Associates Ltd. (Golder); however, as the mine matured and gained years of operating experience, the ownership of deposition planning shifted to be undertaken by a Diavik employee with Golder providing training, guidance and review support. During recent planning and commissioning of new areas of the PKC Facility, the ability for in-house deposition planning allowed Diavik to quickly evaluate a number of alternative deposition strategies for these new areas and it allowed operators to react to requirements for short term changes in deposition in these new areas, which is typical when operating a facility in a cold subarctic climate. This paper discusses the process by which operational efficiency was gained at Diavik through a collaborative relationship between Diavik and Golder to train Diavik staff in deposition planning and transition Golder’s role to provide training, guidance and review.[All papers were considered for technical and language appropriateness by the organizing committee.]
Affiliation: Non UBC
URI: http://hdl.handle.net/2429/38057
Peer Review Status: Unreviewed
Scholarly Level: Other

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