Six Sigma Drilling and Blasting

Six Sigma Drilling and Blasting

Drilling and Blasting is a complex process involving heavy machinery, structural geology, engineering designs, and thousands of pounds of explosives. This process is specifically designed to optimize the fragmentation while minimizing the cost and environmental factors. Often times mines begin this process and call in consultants to assist in the optimization, however the design is not the only consideration. This is were six sigma drilling and blasting processes can help.

Six Sigma Drilling and Blasting

When designing any drilling and blasting program the errors need to be considered. These errors come in all forms such as, drill deviation, stiffness ratio, actual subdrill depth, and explosive characteristics. However, “engineering out” these errors results in large costs and worse fragmentation – the opposite of the intended goal. Instead a six sigma approach must be taken to control these errors and ensure constant improvement in the operators ability. This six sigma process can result in over a 30% to 50% cost savings with better fragmentation.

This can be started through the set up of a proper team to oversee improvements and develop key performance indicators (KPIs) for a proper drilling and blasting program. After this, measurements of these KPIs along with quality control programs ensure that the six sigma process is continually improving. This allows for increased blast patterns, better fragmentation, higher production, and lower drilling and blasting costs.

If you want to start a six sigma drilling and blasting program you can contact us at Anthony@idc-pbs.com or read these article below to gain additional insight into the six sigma drilling and blasting process.

See Anthony Konya’s latest special report in the March 2017 edition of Aggregate Manager