Environmental Monitoring and Research

Remote Monitoring at Snap Lake Mine

Wednesday, November 20, 2019 - 10:00am to 10:20am Theatre Two


M.H. Peters (Presenting)
De Beers Group
F. Mensah-Yeboah
De Beers Group
I. Milne
Campbell Scientific (Canada) Corp.

The Snap Lake Mine is a former underground diamond mine operated by De Beers Canada Inc. (De Beers), located about 220 km northeast of Yellowknife in the Northwest Territories. The Snap Lake mine operated from 2008 to 2015, and entered a Care and Maintenance mode in December 2015.  The mine is currently entering its fourth year of being managed in this Extended Care and Maintenance phase.

In order to ensure continual remote monitoring of certain key geotechnical, meteorological and air quality instrumentation and to enable visual observation of key infrastructure, work was done in 2018 to integrate new and existing monitoring instrumentation into the existing Campbell Scientific PakBus network. In this presentation De Beers will share a summary of this work, with the emphasis on the type of technology, detail of installation and integration of systems between the various pieces of instrumentation.

First we will discuss installation of the 5 data collection stations that relay geotechnical instrumentation information. The data collection system at each of the 5 stations consists of a solar panel,  battery, data logger, multiplexor and short-wave radio. To enable redundancy, a manual data collection via USB was added, in the event that remote communication with the stations is lost. 

Second, an overview of the installation of camera monitoring stations as well as the communications protocol used for the integration of the weather and ambient air quality data transmitted via satellite will be presented. 

While the focus will be on the technology and systems used for remote monitoring, and not the actual monitoring results per se, it is our intention to share this and some of the successes and challenges experienced during the first year of remote monitoring during zero occupancy conditions.