June 2014: Following the successful commissioning of two surface main fan stations delivered on a turnkey basis at the end of 2013 to Platinum Group Metals’ (PTM) Maseve project — being built by the Western Bushveld Joint Venture (WBJV) — BBE Projects is now executing a subsequent order for an additional two fan stations. BBE Projects is a division of consulting engineering company Bluhm Burton Engineering.

The second order is identical to the first, calling for one bifurcated and one trifurcated main fan station, incorporating two and three axial flow fans respectively, powered by 315 kW motors. As with the first order, the scope includes all structural, mechanical and electrical engineering design and specifications, all steel ducting, buildings, fan mechanicals, electric drives, instrumentation and control systems, as well as construction of the raisebore ventilation shaft collars and application of ground stabilisation around each collar.

The BBE Projects team is on track to commission the new fan stations in January 2015.

Formal construction of the WBJV Project 1 platinum mine, a shallow, high grade deposit, began in 2010. First production through the North twin decline system is scheduled to ramp up through 2015, with a targeted full 20-month ramp up to 160 000 tpm run-of-mine (ROM) nameplate capacity. Two identical twin declines with immediate access to high grade ore are necessary to extract the most flexibility and value from the ore body.

In collaboration with DRA, the primary EPCM contractor for the mine’s surface development, BBE Projects has planned the construction of the surface main fan stations in such a way that several tasks are executed simultaneously, ensuring the best possible delivery date.

Environmental issues needing particular attention on these projects include mitigating the impact of noise and dust on the local farming community. Power during construction is being provided by on-site generators.

“BBE Projects has forged an excellent long term relationship with DRA through our consultancy work, and we’re delighted to be working alongside them on turnkey projects for the first time,” says BBE Projects MD Richard Gundersen. “This further entrenches our total fan station capability in the market place and builds on other successful turnkey projects executed for major platinum and coal clients.”

BBE Projects was created in response to increasing client demand for a full-spectrum turnkey contracting service in the field of mine ventilation, refrigeration and cooling. Its team comprises mechanical, electrical, civil, process and project engineers with experience gained in the world’s deepest mines, across a range of commodities, supported by draughting, finance and administration personnel.

BBE Projects focuses specifically on delivering complete and ready-to-operate systems to mining sector clients. The company is structured to deliver turnkey projects incorporating the design, supply, construction, commissioning and process performance guarantee of complete surface and underground ventilation, refrigeration and cooling systems.

Particular areas of expertise include refrigeration and air cooling stations, energy saving schemes, thermal storage installations, main fan control and monitoring systems. All manner of projects are undertaken, from greenfield sites to plant extensions and upgrades. Being totally independent, BBE Projects is able to offer the optimal solution using the best combination of selected equipment from a variety of suppliers.