Novamera, with the assistance of Memorial University of Newfoundland in St. John’s has developed Sustainable Mining By Drilling (SMD), a leading-edge solution for mining steeply dipping, narrow vein deposits.

SMD is safer. More economical. And truly, environmentally sustainable.

Our unique solution combines industry-proven, directional drilling equipment and high-resolution, downhole imaging with transformational innovations, smart systems and data analytics.

The result: a two-pass process that identifies vein shape and is highly flexible to changes in vein geometry. A selective, surgically accurate mining process that’s clean, efficient and offers the potential for low capex with high return.

HOW’S THE TWO-PASS SYSTEM WORK?

The first pass uses a diamond drill to create a pilot hole guided by the near borehole imaging tool (“NBIT”).

At regular intervals the NBIT performs downhole surveys and measures the hole trajectory and distance from the hanging wall and foot wall.

The second pass uses a larger pile-top drill rig to follow the pilot hole, reaming out the vein to the width of the mineralization. Broken material is continuously transported to the surface with reverse circulation, air-lift assist.

When excavation is complete, the hole is backfilled with a low-strength concrete made of cement and tailings from the processed ore, minimizing conventional waste storage above-ground.

Want a detailed overview of the SMD process?
Check out this presentation or this video.

Two miners standing on rig

“Keyhole Surgery” For Mining = Unprecedented Precision and Potential

SMD elevates your mining operation and makes it a more refined science. One that makes processes – and outcomes – smarter, greener, safer and more economical.

Smarter is better

SMD is powered by an integrated network of cloud-based, intelligent systems, software and devices. Our proprietary algorithms identify vein and host rock interfaces and intuitively adapt to the environment. Our exclusive downhole directional vein-sensing tool surveys, evaluates, maps and optimizes drilling patterns. Once in the ground, our high resolution, near real-time imaging continues to plot a clear, accurate trajectory for the operator to follow.

All this means we can be smarter about where we mine, how we do it and take only what we want from the ground, leaving the rest, intact. It also opens the door to efficiently excavating more elusive, smaller sites traditional mining has ignored.

Two miners discussing project while using tablet
Overhead view of green mining site

Green mining –
yes, it is possible

Environmental sustainability is a cornerstone of Novamera’s mission and one we’ve proudly built our technologies upon. SMD maintains the environmental integrity of your site with our precise mining methods. Our backfilling process reduces surface waste, the resources needed to dispose of it and keeps the ground stable and easily restored to its natural state.

The future of mining is green, and Novamera is thrilled to be spearheading the tech and methods to support the movement. Care to learn more? We’ve dedicated an entire page to our environmental sustainability right here.

Unmatched safety

SMD is inherently less hazardous than traditional mining. Our highly automated, intelligence-driven solutions create smaller, safer, more efficient teams and stable sites. Crews and operators remain above ground, far from the face of the mine and out of harm’s way.

Two smiling miners at mine site

More economical

SMD saves – and makes – more money than conventional selective mining methods.

By using SMD to precisely mine deposits, your time, focus and operations can land squarely on the areas that yield a worthwhile return. Narrow vein deposits, small-scale high-grade pockets or parts of your existing site that have been economically unsound to pursue? They’re what SMD was built for.

In fact, Sustainable Mining By Drilling is unlocking entirely new, highly lucrative opportunities to explore previously avoided deposits in a variety of environments.

And because our process takes only ore and leaves the waste in the ground, your budget for manpower, storage and transportation of surface waste can go toward other things – like growing your organization and your bottom line.

Looking for ways to optimize your tech and your operations with SMD?

We’re here to help.

get in touch