Sibanye Gold has selected Aggreko technology to find an alternative source of power for its Beatrix gold mining operations in South Africa.
The new, environmentally friendly fuel uses naturally occurring methane gas intersected during underground mining operations to generate additional power at Beatrix.
The mining company selected Aggreko for the rental solution, as the flexibility allows Sibanye to generate the precise amount of power required, according to the gas supply. Increases or decreases can be adjusted quickly, ensuring that gas is not wasted or excess generation capacity is unused.
Sibanye Gold environmental engineering manager Dirk van Greuning said: "We knew that we wanted to generate electricity from the gas as it was a precious resource that was being completely un-utilised through flaring.
"Due to the precise characteristics of the gas supply being uncertain, the flexibility offered by the Aggreko solution was very attractive compared to the option of buying a fleet of generators."
Sibanye Gold’s environmental engineering managers predicted a change in methane supply in terms of the flow, quality and quantity, and the new solution was developed to address this issue.
Aggreko Southern Africa general manager Martin Foster said: "Getting the installation just right took both significant effort and investment from Sibanye Gold and Aggreko, but the result is an extremely satisfying vindication for all the hard work.