Commercial explosives and blasting systems manufacturer Orica has released its new blast design and modelling software for underground mining applications.

The new SHOTPlus Underground software is designed for advanced blast design and complex blasting scenarios and follows successful trials by Orica’s technical services teams.

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Orica Global Digital Products senior manager Angelo Labriola said: “Designing, analysing and visualising in 3D has never been easier, ring to ring and hole to hole interactions and overall blast dynamics are at your fingertips, allowing users to optimise and maximise output, benefit and results.”

According to Orica, underground production blasting requires geometrically complex ring patterns.

Explosives loading and initiation design optimisation, as well as producing clear instructions to blasting crews can have major implications for mine processing productivity, thereby requiring a specialised software solution such as SHOTPlus.

SHOTPlus Underground is designed to deliver an improved interactive 3D environment and enhanced visualisation, as well as quality assurance/quality control (QA/QC) tools in order to identify efficient blast design to ensure quality outcome.

Orica noted that this set of features and tools allow for easy adjustment of blast designs. They also allow a swift comparison of different scenarios.

Labriola added: “The ability to seamlessly adjust, visualise and optimise underground blast loading designs and timing allows users to efficiently design blasts, irrespective of complexity.”

“It also enables the necessary analysis to optimise the performance of blast designs with Orica’s electronic initiation systems, dramatically cutting down the time required to produce loading and timing instructions for blast crews.”

In November 2019, Epiroc and Orica formed a strategic collaboration to develop a semi-automated explosives delivery system.