Objectives of the commitment
The IÂ²Mine project is currently running and has just passed mid-term. As IÂ²Mine only marks the start of a series of development activities aimed at realising the concept of an invisible, zero impact, deep mine, the IÂ²Mine consortium is looking for a second period of research activities that will pave the way toward an envisaged pilot installation of technology developed in the frame of the project(s). The particular objectives of the phase 2 base on the achievements of the first, currently running phase and will be concretised towards the end of phase 1.
The core of the project will be to develop breakthrough technologies for autonomous, highly selective, continuous mineral extraction processes and machinery including rock mechanics and ground control solutions, incorporating health, safety and environmental issues.
Description of the activities
As the particular objectives of the phase 2 base on the achievements of the first, currently running phase also the content of work and the intended activities can only be described qualitatively.
The concept of the entire I2Mine approach is to develop innovative methods, technologies, machines and equipment necessary for the efficient exploitation of minerals and disposal of waste, all of which will be carried out underground. This will dramatically reduce the volume of surface transportation of both minerals and waste, minimising above ground installations and reducing the environmental impact.
New eco-efficient technologies will be developed and applied in order to make the entire mining process more efficient and environmentally sound. The concept is for an integrated mine, with the majority of the installations underground, and only the final product will be transported above ground to be shipped to the customer. Production waste will be treated and stored underground and gaseous emissions will be managed underground as far as practical. I2Mine-2 will work on ideas and concepts developed in phase 1 that increase energy efficiency and decrease waste.
The work of IÂ²Mine-2 will further concentrate on developing breakthrough technologies for autonomous, highly selective, continuous mineral extraction processes and machinery based on new sensor technologies, face front separation as well as innovative concepts for mass flow management and transportation integrating state of the art technologies. The concept of an invisible, zero impact mine requires a refined process underground that selectively extracts the mineral thereby reducing waste. For this reason, improved extraction machines and near to face processing methods, including backfill procedures, need to be developed. These developments include rock mechanics and ground control solutions, incorporating health, safety and environmental issues.
In deep mining health and safety aspects are critical. The ultimate safety in deep mining can only be achieved with no humans, or zero entry, in the operational area. Although not immediately achievable, the zero entry mine will be based on full automation, semi-automation and remote control for all machinery. First steps were carried out within the frame of I2Mine phase 1. The project is going to develop innovative solutions in terms of methods, technologies, machines and equipment that may be applied in phase 2.
It will be quite likely that the work will also consider the intended subsequent pilot phase, where a pilot installation of an autonomous extraction system including pre-concentration and waste backfill is envisaged. The work in IÂ²Mine-2 will therefore take mainly issues into consideration that needs to be solved in order for the pilot installation to be realised.
Depending on the results and achievements of phase 1 of IÂ²Mine, further research may be necessary to make the extraction system autonomous. The subsequent pre-concentration step will need particular intention as to necessary sensors for the sorting process. Research dedicated to mine infrastructure requirements as well as environmental and health and safety aspects will be tackled as well. One major part of the work will be dedicated to rock mechanics and rock stability problems.
Description of the expected impacts
IÂ²Mine-2 will generate results that will cause significant, sometimes high impacts to the mining community and the society in terms of managing primary mineral resources. There will be a further increase of the productivity of underground activities through autonomous underground operations. The project will enable for mining and underground operations with zero impact on existing surroundings in urban and non-urban areas and additionally create inherently safe underground workings and operating environments. The achievements of the project will strengthen the global competitiveness of the European mining industries as well as of the European equipment suppliers. The results of the project will enable for sustainably accessing deep underground mineral resources that cannot be exploited today. Thus, the project will contribute to increase the mineral resources base in Europe, with the related decrease of EU dependency on mineral resources imports.
Coordinating organisation & role
Name of the coordinating organisation: Luossavaara-Kiirunavaara AB â LKABCountry: SwedenEntity profile: Private sector - large companyRole within the commitment:
Coordination, contributing to new mining and underground processing methods, work in rock mechanics and ground control
Fraunhofer-Gesellschaft zur FÃ¶rderung der Angewandten Forschung e.V.
Name of the organisation: Fraunhofer-Gesellschaft zur FÃ¶rderung der Angewandten Forschung e.V. Country: Germany Entity profile: Governmental/public body
Role within the commitment: Fraunhofer will lead the CFRP and GFRP recycling research.
Fraunhofer will perform corrosion tests on the developed materials.
Fraunhofer will work with CIDAUT on the implementation, validation and refinement of LCCA tools for the project. Fraunhofer is the Quality Manager of the Consortium and will oversee deliverables and general reporting are produced with the best possible quality following agreed review standards.
Name of the organisation: Fundacion Cidaut Country: Spain Entity profile:
Role within the commitment: CIDAUT will lead the research activities on materials recycling and compounding, implementing lab scale demonstrators of each process at its premises and, later, supporting end-users upscale the processes.
CIDAUT will perform mechanical tests, microstructural analyses, injection moulding capability studies on the developed materails, and will work with Fraunhofer on the implementation, validation and refinement of LCCA tools for the project.
RWTH Aachen University (Institute of plastic processing (IKV)
Name of the organisation: RWTH Aachen University (Institute of plastic processing (IKV) Country: Germany Entity profile: Governmental/public body
Role within the commitment: RWTH will implement the novel 3D Generative Preforming process (3D Fibre Spraying) that enables to create high-value long fibre-reinforced 3D preforms for thermoplastic and thermoset composites at low process costs (different kinds of yarn as a raw material, low tooling costs due to low cavity pressures). This cost effective technology allows to align the sprayed fibres in order to produce high-performance, engineered anisotropic products.
Universita' di Cagliari
Name of the organisation: Universita' di Cagliari Country: Italy Entity profile:
Role within the commitment: University of Cagliari is one of the leading European organization in the resin design and coupling with thermoplastic and thermose materials. University of Cagliari will support in the definition of the composite materials, both from CFRP/GFRP, ABS and Rare Earth composite material.
Name of the organisation: Relight Country: Italy Entity profile: Private sector - SME
Role within the commitment: RELIGHT will work with ITRB to provide the research partners with residues for the recycled ABS supply and the REE recovery processes, including their HydroWEEE process as part of the processes to be studied and analyzed.
Name of the organisation: Piaggio Aerospace Country: Italy Entity profile: Private sector - large company
Role within the commitment: Piaggio Aerospace is one of the project End Users (Aeronautics Industry): as such it will provide requirements and further applications that could be developed with the Consortium Materials. Piaggio will assist in the compounds selection, provide Fraunhofer with specific corrosion requirements on business jet size aircraft, and will assess that the developed materials performance fits the selected applications desired improvements.
Name of the organisation: Blackshape Aircrafts Country: Italy Entity profile: Private sector - SME
Role within the commitment: Blackshape Aircrafts is one of the project End Users (Aeronautics Industry): as such it will provide requirements and further applications that could be developed with the Consortium Materials. Blackshape will support to fulfill the requirements of the aeronautics industry on ultra light jet, light jet and trainer for Syllabus, and will assess that the developed alloys performance fits the selected applications desired improvements.
Name of the organisation: KU Leuven Country: Belgium Entity profile: Academia
Role within the commitment: KUL will collaborate on the balance problem studies and will lead the rare earth recovery research with the solvometallurgical and ionometallurgical processes.
KUL will also contribute to the final compounding selection.
KUL is the Dissemination Manager of the project, promoting that all partners are active on the project Dissemination.
Name of the organisation: FIDAMC Country: Spain Entity profile: Governmental/public body
Role within the commitment: FIDAMC is going to lead the Work Package on Compression Moulding with CFRP-enhanced materials. As part of the AIRBUS Group, FIDAMC will also be able to provide the input material.
FIDAMC successfully developed a 3D Printer of own design to serve the Aerospace Industry and will be supporting Smart Lab 3D Industries in its 3D printer design.
COMPOSITE INNOVATION CENTER
Name of the organisation: COMPOSITE INNOVATION CENTER Country: Canada Entity profile: Governmental/public body
Role within the commitment: Composite Innovation Center is one of the world leading organization in the field of Composite materials, both from carbon fiber and vegetal-based fibers.
Composite Innovation center has successfully implemented, at lab-scale, recycling processes for CFRP and GFRP.
Existing EU Contribution: No
Period to implement the commitment: from 01-11-2015 to 31-10-2018