Minerva Mine, Queensland, Australia

The customer

When experienced mining operator Felix Resources planned a new open-cut coal mine in Central Queensland, it knew that instant, dependable mobile communication was required for the safe and efficient operation of the mine.

Minerva Mine is a A$68 million, 12 year, project to extract coal from a three to four kilometer area. The mine will eventually produce 2.5 million tonnes of coal per year for export. Sandhurst Mining expects to have 80 permanent staff on-site, working a 24-hour a day, six-day-a week roster.

The challenge

Felix Resources had two main considerations in choosing its mobile communications equipment: the need for immediate, dependable voice communications now, as well as the ability to move to efficient data communications options in the future.

Cellular communication was not an option because of the need for immediate group communications, dedicated channels that are free of interference, the robustness and reliability of the equipment, and the need for back-up options in case of equipment failure.

The solution

Tait provided a mobile repeater: a Tait TB8000 base station mounted on a trailer. The repeater links all the mobile and portable terminals in use at the mine.

Minerva Mine has a modern, dependable and private voice communications system that enables all equipment operators to communicate effectively.

Eventually the mine would like to transmit data - production information, GPS co-ordinates and engine diagnostics - from its vehicles to its base computer system. The data capability of the Tait equipment will make this a simple and cost-effective upgrade.

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