Drone Technology has found a place in the Alaskan mining industry. Trekking through the harsh terrains of the Alaskan landscape has always been challenging and quite expensive. Now with the availability and affordability of Drones, mining claim owners can explore and evaluate in minutes what used to take a lot of time and money.
We tend to call them drones, but to those in the know they’re often referred to as Unmanned Aerial Vehicles or UAVs. It’s not surprising that in the mining industry would be the first to jump into the brave new world of UAVs and put them through their paces immediately.
The Alaskan Tintina region hosts some of the most rugged terrain in North America with some of the richest gold deposits. The area is also known to contain other mineral deposits including copper, lead, zinc and silver of the volcanogenic massive sulfide (VMS) type. The gold deposits in the Tintina originated from volcanic intrusions into older rocks. Weathering of these rocks created the large placer deposits of the Tintina, accounting for about 50 percent of all the gold mined in Alaska.
The Tintina is intersected by the Alcan Highway for most of its length; however, exploration in the area is difficult. Access to the region is challenged by a lack of suitable secondary highways, airports or lakes suitable for aircraft landing. Exploration teams have to be flown in by plane or helicopter. However, as further exploration efforts are being undertaken, it is becoming more apparent that the Tintina Region may be one of the largest gold bearing provinces on Earth and access has just become incredibly less dangerous and much more affordable.
“For us, the bigger picture is what this technology allows us to do that could never have been done before,” says George Playton of Dorado Equities. “This Drone Technology will change the nature of our work. For example, with drones capable of delivering samples from site, surveyors will spend less time gathering data in the field and more time interpreting it. We’ve been testing drones fitted with military-grade cameras to provide real time aerial footage and 3D maps of our sites. This is far cheaper than using planes for our survey work, and the savings at our sites in are estimated to be millions a year.”
Playton exclaims, “As a land management company with thousands of acres of mineral claims in the Alaskan Tintina Belt Region, we can sometimes send teams into the scrub on foot to do a survey of a mining lease property it can take weeks and even months depending on the weather to complete the job, but a UAV can scan the same area in a matter of hours. Similarly, using a UAV to scout a mining lease and collect data and keep track of mine operations and equipment can save significant amounts of time.”
From mapping and surveying as part of the exploration process to monitoring properties and ensuring good environmental management and mine rehabilitation processes, the use of UAVs has taken a very short time to proliferate throughout the industry. It’s safe to say that, with the increasing uptake of automation and innovative technologies in the sector, the information age has taken deep root in the mining industry and the traditional roles as we know them are quickly changing to keep pace.
Company Name: Dorado Equities Inc.
Contact Person: Scott Murphy
Email: Send Email
Address:8000 IH-10 West, STE 600/333
City: San Antonio
State: TX 78230
Country: United States