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Throughout our national network of offices we serve the needs of the Australian mining industry, helping our clients in the safe, cost-effective and responsible development of mineral resources and so enable them to deliver the material necessary to support a globally sustainable society. From pre-feasibility to mine closure, our services cover all mining-related cultural, environmental, geological and engineering disciplines. 



Mining Project Profile: Ok Tedi Mine

The Ok Tedi Mine is an open-pit copper and gold mine located near the headwaters of the Ok Tedi river, which is sourced in the Star Mountains of Papua New Guinea. Douglas Partners (DP) has had a long association with the mine since it started operations in the 1984. DP has been involved with investigating waste dump sites, designing various drainage options for stabilising the ridge adjacent to the Ok Menga Hydro Scheme intake, and identifying the potential extent and mechanism for the Upper Sulphide Creek landslide.

More recently, DP was contracted to:
  • Review the investigations and report for the open cut drainage tunnel;
  • Prepare the support design for the tunnel, both for drill, blast and tunnel boring machine (TBM) options;
  • Provide geotechnical services during tunnel excavation;
  • Carry out post-construction audits of the drainage tunnel, Gold Coast Drive and of the Ok Menga Road tunnel, to determine long-term support requirements.
With up to 550 metres of cover, the drainage tunnel gave DP Engineers a great challenge in a high stress environment. As it approached the open pit mineralisation, sheared and very low strength secondary altered zones resulted in high water inflows.
Although the TBM worked well in the first 3300 metres length, the conditions became so extreme that it eventually had to be stood down. The remaining portion of the drainage tunnel and the adjacent Gold Coast Drive were successfully finished by drill and blast methods.


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