SUDBURY, Ontario – On Dec. 6, 2010, partners Rio Tinto and the Centre for Excellence in Mining Innovation (CEMI) celebrated the official signing of an agreement that will showcase CEMI’s capabilities to the world.
The historic signing follows the announcement last week when global mining company Rio Tinto committed to establish the Rio Tinto Centre for Underground Mine Construction (RTC-UMC) at CEMI in this northern Ontario city. Rio Tinto is investing $10 million dollars over five years for research into rapid underground mine construction.
Rio Tinto is focusing on mechanized excavation including a shaft boring system (SBS) and tunnel boring systems (TBS). Rio Tinto has selected CEMI as the agent for collaborative research leadership in support of high speed construction associated with underground mine construction. For Rio Tinto, this investment reflects the company’s long term commitment to science, engineering and innovation, and is central to its approach to research partnerships. This is the fifth global long term research centre to be established by Rio Tinto.
The Rio Tinto Centre at CEMI will undertake research with respect to ground and machine performance. For this purpose, prototype test sites will be instrumented to improve ground characterization techniques and to develop innovative support systems to facilitate high speed, mechanized tunnel and shaft development technologies for underground mines in highly stressed ground and at depth.
The signing was attended by Ontario government minister and one of the founding members of CEMI, the Hon. Rick Bartolucci MPP, Minister of Municipal Affairs and Housing, joined with the Honourable Michael Gravelle MPP, Minister of Northern Development, Mines and Forestry, together with parliamentary colleagues and guests from Rio Tinto, CEMI and the mining community.
Dr. Peter K. Kaiser is CEMI president and CEO. Visit the website at www.MiningExcellence.ca to learn more.