Check out some of the mining industry's most spectacular explosions and learn about its deepest drill holes.
With exploration drilling, blast hole drilling and blasting part of everyday life in mining, we see firsthand how quickly technology changes and how things get bigger and better. So, it will come as a bit of a surprise that one of the deepest holes ever drilled was completed 25 years ago.
The hole? It was the Kola Superdeep Borehole, in Russia. They were targeting a depth of 15,000m — basically just to see how far they could drill into the Earth’s crust. The hole was drilled “stop-start”, with branches off the main drill hole, between 1979 and 1992. One of the branches reached a final depth of 12,262m. It wasn’t until 2008 that a hole went deeper — and even then it was only 27 metres deeper. That was for the Al Shaheen oil field, in Qatar.
In Australia, the deepest diamond-drilled hole was in the famous Superpit in Kalgoorlie. Drilled in 2015 by Foraco it had a final depth of 3011.5m. Hopefully there are more record-breaking holes to come in the near future.
Mining industry’s big explosions
With mining companies mostly keeping blasting events private and under wraps, it is hard to tell what the biggest blast ever was, but here are some of the most spectacular blasts we’ve ever seen, from both Australia and around the world.
This is a one-million tonne blast at an iron ore mine, filmed by the Discovery Channel.
Here’s another iron ore blast, this time at Christmas Creek in Western Australia.
This one is the Mt Keith nickel mine, also in WA.
And finally, here’s a very nicely done video of a spectacular blast, from Dyno Nobel.
Do you think you have had the biggest blast ever on your site? Or do you have some spectacular blast footage you’d like us to share? Let us know by commenting below!