Gold & Platinum Mining
- Hydraulic Prop Support
- Barricade and Pack installation
- Shotcreting and Vent Control
- Stope Support
- Vamping and Reclamation
- Not a single fatality in any stope face supported by our props when Hartebeesfontein Gold Mines experienced the disastrous earthquake in March of 2005.
- Part of the Blyvooruitzicht Gold Mine team who for eight consecutive years were awarded first prize in the Western Areas Managers Safety Competition.
- Many current contracts in place for more than ten years.
In 1994 Mike Faure, an experienced geologist and rock mechanics engineer believed that the mines had to be convinced of the technical, financial and safety advantages of the hydraulic prop above any other product. A company Stope Technology Services Pty Ltd (Stopetek) was established. A theoretical study was undertaken which proved that, despite the much higher capital cost of hydraulic props, the operational cost to the mines over the life of the prop was far lower than operational costs of any other of the ‘cheaper’ support systems besides the tremendous safety advantages. The next move was to prove the theoretical study in practice. A key factor was the proper installation, monitoring and control of these props in the work place as hydraulic props could be reused on a continuous basis, unlike the ‘cheap’ props which could only be installed once and then sacrificed. This involved the development of a sophisticated computerised monitoring, tracking and control system. Every prop is fitted with a transponder allowing the position of all props to be scanned regularly and recorded accordingly.
An opportunity was then obtained at Saaiplaas to prove this concept on a mine on a contract basis. As Mike also recognized the superior characteristics of the Elbroc RB80 prop over other hydraulic props he approached the E L Bateman group to enter into an exclusive supply arrangement for purposes of proving his system. This arrangement presently still exists with Elbroc Mining Products Pty Ltd being a sister company of Stopetek.