STEM (science, technology, engineering and math), and the people who specialize in it, make up the foundation of Newmont’s long-term success. To continue our series conversation on STEM, we take a look at mine engineering and the skills it requires to help run our operations more efficiently and effectively.
Depending on whether a mine is surface or underground, a number of factors must be identified so that Newmont’s mine engineers can design a site for maximum safety and value while adhering to industry leading environmental and social principles.
Mine engineers play a vital role in the planning and design of a mine, and are also important to ensuring the ongoing safety and stability of a site – including after mining has finished. The work of a mine engineer is multi-faceted and never boring. From on-the-ground site management to research and data analysis, mine engineers have a wide range of roles and responsibilities.
One way mine engineers apply their skills at Newmont is by ensuring that the designs and plans for our mines are safe, achievable and optimized. Since every ore body is unique, innovative extraction and processing methods must be continually developed and finessed so that we can continue delivering on our commitments to stakeholders. Working closely with their colleagues, Newmont’s engineers are always working to improve technical competence in ways that keep our business running better.
Using information collected from geologists, geotechnical and metallurgical engineers, as well as productivity and cost analysts, mine engineers combine their training in math and science with sophisticated mining software to determine optimal design criteria for mining methods, equipment requirements, and drill and blast patterns.
Collaborating for Best Practices
Part of their responsibility also includes developing best method approaches for transporting minerals to the processing plants, designing and overseeing the construction of mine shafts and tunnels, and providing solutions to complex issues related to land reclamation and waste management.
While cutting-edge technology and computer software programs are essential tools of the trade, mine engineers must also have strong leadership skills and an understanding of both company and community needs and expectations. Maintaining ongoing dialogue with academic, civic, government and community organizations helps engineers plan and operate the mine in a way that considers the interests of stakeholders.
Stay tuned for our next STEM blog, where we will look at how math plays an important part in our business strategy. For more information about Newmont, visit our website and follow us on Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn.