Murray & Roberts Cementation has secured a turnkey contract to raisedrill and support two ventilation shafts at Debswana’s Morupule colliery in Botswana. Both shafts, each with a 6.1m diameter, will have a final depth of 100m.

The scope of work includes the project management of the manufacture, supply, installation and commissioning of two 1MW fans in the upcast shaft. Allan Widlake, business development executive at Murray & Roberts Cementation, says that the company brings its extensive project management expertise to the table and has a solid track record equipping major vertical shafts.

“What is most significant about this contract is that support of the shafts will be done using a remote controlled shotcrete machine which will spray a concrete lining into the inside of the shafts,” he says. This new technology has been brought in from Australia and represents a significant investment from Murray & Roberts Cementation.

Morupule colliery supplies coal to Morupule power station and this contract forms part of the current expansion programme whereby the mine’s capacity will be increased from 1 million tons per annum to 3 million tons per annum.

The contract will begin in November 2010 and is scheduled for completion in June 2011.