Report: APP CMHS Project 1

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4.2.2. China

China as the largest coal producer and consumer in the world with the third largest resources has a wealth of technology that is applied to challenges that many other countries are yet to experience. As much of the resources lie at considerable depth (greater than 1000 m) they face significant levels of hazards that are not as prevalent in other APP countries. In this regard China has a wide range of safety technologies that have been applied to these issues. Much of the technology being applied in other APP countries is in the process of being integrated into Chinese coal mines to deal with significant safety challenges.

Leading safety technologies include:

  • novel systems for spontaneous combustion detection and control

  • integrated coal mining and gas drainage

  • innovative longwall gas drainage systems including the use of overlying and underlying gas drainage tunnels

  • longwall top coal caving for thick seam mining to reduce labour intensity and improve face stability control

  • pillarless mining applications to improve ground control and resource recovery

  • multiple seam mining optimisation to improve overall gas drainage efficiency and reduce outburst risk.

Critical needs for future development include the development and implementation of a risk based approach to all facets of mining operations and throughout the entire industry. In addition, there are strong technological requirements for mining hazard prediction and detection, drainage drilling in difficult conditions e.g. soft coal and fractured strata, and automation of mining applications.

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