Exploration

GERRI partners develop innovative tools and approaches geared to explore for new ore deposits and to define their extent. Our strength in exploration lies in the ability to use non-invasive exploration techniques and to pool methods out of different scientific disciplines. We develop new technologies for exploration of mineral resources and for monitoring its extraction by combining geophysical methods and remote sensing techniques. GERRI-partners are specialized in the remote sensing quantification of geomorphological, geological and surface characteristics and their analysis. We capture and use multi-scale (down to cm-scale) and multi-source (from hyperspectral cameras and sensors) data to analyse morphology and tectonics, to characterise underlying acting processes and to perform estimations on potential deposits of mineral resources. One of our focal points is the development and use of near-field remote sensing techniques, i.e. applying drone-borne systems (unmanned aerial systems) for specific tasks along the value chain of primary raw materials.

 

Remote sensing

 

Remote sensing is used to acquire physical parameters of the earth's crust. This information can be used to estimate the resource potential of an area without making physical contact. Our strength is the combined application of multi-scale and multi-source data for exploration of critical raw material. Scale varies, depending on the question, from space, air, drone to ground and integrates morpho-tectonic analysis of Digital Elevation Models with multi- and hyperspectral data analysis.

  • Multi-scale and multi-source mineral mapping
  • Unmanned Aerial Vehicles (UAV)

 

Mining

Mining has a long tradition among the GERRI partners. Through decades of research in this field, we offer a high degree of expertise. Our knowledge ranges from the planning stage including logistical challenges underground to the mechanical processing of rocks. One core objective of GERRI is the innovation and further development of sustainable processes in order to reduce the strong environmental impact of mining. To achieve this goal, potential applications for novel methods such as in situ bioleaching are investigated, as well as optimised processes, e. g. in groundwater management or the post-mining recultivation of the landscape.

 

Mine health and safety

 

Mine health and safety are essential to GERRI. Our expertise is in the installation and operation of control systems to monitor dust concentration and ensure controlled underground ventilation. Simulations can simplify planning and optimize existing processes. In addition, real-time controls enable the early detection of risks.

  • Dust control and monitoring (optical aerosol spectrometer)
  • VENTSIM Visual (underground ventilation simulation)

 

Post mining

 

GERRI uses current backfill technologies and develops customized solutions. The backfill materials are analyzed by long-term characterization in order to optimize the properties for special applications, such as the filling of HAW-repositories (highly active waste).

  • Backfill material for HAW-repositories
  • Backfill technology

 

Rock cutting

 

Our expertise in rock cutting lies mainly in mechanical excavation techniques using various tools (e. g. shovels, discs, point-hammers). The main areas of application are: tunneling, tunnel construction and mining of raw materials.

  • Mechanical rock cutting (lab scale, demo scale)

 

Sustainable mine practice

 

Sustainable mining is the first important step towards a resource-efficient circular economy. GERRI focuses on the planning of sustainable mines and the investigation of applications for alternative mining technologies with a more selective and ecological approach.

  • Artisanal small scale mining (ASM)
  • Terrestrial 3D scanning
  • In-situ bioleaching
  • Textile mechanical components
  • Mine water management